Junior Bruce
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Junior Bruce

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"Review: JUNIOR BRUCE – “The Headless King”"

I get dozens of albums sent to me every week and it’s hard for me to pick and choose which albums I review when. A lot of the time I fuck up and miss out on a good album because I never got around to reviewing it. Sometimes, on the other hand, I find a diamond in the rough, an album that I may not have sought after on my own. It took A389 Recordings to open my eyes to the dirty sludge magic of Junior Bruce and from there, I write my review.

Junior Bruce is a new band to me. I’ve never heard their tunes before I got my copy of The Headless King but within the first two minutes of the opening song “Defeatist,” they have officially won me over. Starting out in silence and then suddenly kicking into an infectious stoner metal riff. The vocals might turn off some. Actually, probably not seeing as they are done by Scott Angelacos (Bloodlet). I love these vocals, a nice hearty yell, not too clean, but not incomprehensible. At times Angelacos has a certain Neil Fallon-esque to his voice. This is heard very well on tracks like “Warriors Of The Son” and “Waffle House Murders.” This makes me very, very happy.


It’s not just the vocals that get me going about Junior Bruce either. The music is fucking phenomenal. Crunchy stoner rocking sludge. There are actually a lot of things going on here. The nice, steady drumming is spectacular and it complements the always-mesmerizing guitar work perfectly. The thick bass lines that slither throughout the tracks adds yet another layer to the pile of dirt and grime that makes this record what it is.

All of the songs on this record aren’t slow jams either. Tracks like “Lt. Fury” are faster paced but still with their nice, grooving sections. Again the Clutch-inspired vocals come in to play and once more, I cannot complain. I love the driving riffs for these faster tracks. Take “Churchburner” for example. The riff doesn’t seem too complicated, but the way it is executed makes it into a thundering barn burner. I seriously love what these guys are doing. I love stoner rock with an attitude and Junior Bruce have definitely got attitude. After playing through this album over and over again, I can honestly say this is one of my favorite stoner albums I’ve heard in a long, long time. The only real issue I have with the band is the repetition of the riffing. It doesn’t take away much from the total score because, repetitive or not, those are some great riffs. Good work. I’ll see you around year-end list time. - American Aftermath


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Still working on that hot first release.

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Currently at a loss for words...