Juniper EP

'Juniper' EP by Myrkur, reviewed by Stephan Boissonneault
'Juniper' by Myrkur

Our Rating

7.0

When Amalie Bruun—known as Myrkur in the music community—dropped her self-titled EP in 2014, it seemed like the answer black metal needed. Bands (all dominantly male) were making repeats of their best selling albums and creativity seemed to be at a decline. Myrkur—backed up on production from the front man of Ulver, Garm—produced some good ole fashioned Scandinavian black metal and people were excited for the follow up.

Since then, Myrkur’s sound has been slowly getting more and more poppier, instead living in a dark folk territory. And she certainly lost some hardcore black metal fans after deciding to sing in English on her latest full length Mareridt, but possibly, gained new ones. On the Juniper EP, which probably didn’t warrant a full EP since it’s only two tracks that sound like they didn’t make the cut on Mareridt, Myrkur is taking the new dark folk pop sound and running with it.

The title track sounds like it could be the opening to a new Netflix Scandinavian crime show, relying on Bruun’s powerful voice to resonate within the listener’s ears. The instrumentation builds with strings, vocal tricks, and trilly guitars. It kind of sounds like her voice is in competition with the other instruments during the chorus. It’s fine … and I guess to be expected if you are at all familiar with Mareridt. The next track “Bonden og Kragen” is a piece of beautiful dark folk that sounds like it should be on its own album,
featuring Bruun’s traditional voice and an acoustic guitar. Actually, it’s a wonder why Myrkur doesn’t build a collection of these traditional dark folk tunes and releases another album. While they are a nice accompaniment to other harsher songs, a full release of them would be interesting.

Bruun has shown time and time again that she will create what she wants and not be tied down to one specific sound. It’s her decision, but she may lose some people along the way.

Juniper is now available via Relapse Records

MYRKUR
LIVE DATES:

12/05: SE Gothenburg, Pustervik #
12/07: DK Aarhus, Voxhall #
12/08: DK Copenhagen, Pumpehuset (Sold Out) #
12/10: PL Poznan, U Bazyla #
12/11: PL Krakow, Kwadrat #
12/13: HU Budapest, Durer Kert #
12/14: AT Vienna, Arena #
12/16: NL Tilburg, 013 KZ #
12/18: UK London, The Dome #
12/19: UK Bristol, The Fleece #
12/20: UK Nottingham, Rescue Rooms #
12/21: UK Glasgow, CCA #
12/22: UK Manchester, Gorilla #
02/21: UK York, Jorvik Viking Festival ^
04/11: NL Tilburg – Roadburn Festival ^
05/30: ES Barcelona – Primavera
06/22: FR Clisson, Hellfest ^
07/14: PL Bolkow Castle, Castle Party
07/26: RO Sibiu, Artmania ^
08/09 – 08/10: CZ Jaromer, Brutal Assault

# – Jo Quail supporting
^ – Myrkur: Folkesange