“Not all sinners become better men.”
It’s honestly so exciting to watch good local Australian acts improve their craft in real time. Which is the joyous feeling that hits me the hardest when I engage with Junkhead’s newest track, the dark but riffy and musically jagged lighting strike of ‘Pillar Of Salt‘. For real, jumping from an older track like ‘Kronos‘ to this brand new solid slab of old-school metalcore is a major leap but a great one at that.
The Sydney band’s first release since their debut EP, ‘Warmouth‘ (2016), ‘Pillar Of Salt‘ is seriously some next level shit for Junkhead; setting a dangerously good precedence for their music moving forwards. This is a massive track that sees the NSW group’s chaotic hardcore sound really take off with greater depth, better riffs, and stronger melodic sensibilities, proving that there’s indeed much more to Junkhead than first met the eye.
Other than fine-tuning their already decent songwriting skills further and expanding upon the solid but familiar hardcore bed-rock of their previous EP, Junkhead working closely with local super-producer Chris Blancato has done them real wonders here; the overall size of their sound naturally growing larger in the process.
The atmospheric space of their guitars has gotten wider and grander in scope and the gritty guitar riffs hit damned hard and are as on-point as always. The quality of the band’s production is cleaner, smoother and punchier than ever before, which really carries the song along, and those cleanly sung vocals towards the end of the piece are implemented well but tastefully enough to create and maintain proper impact. ‘Pillar Of Salt‘ flows together better than anything else Junkhead has written thus far; the lyrics are utterly bleak under an emotional lense yet they’re also memorable and gripping (“Not all sinners become better men“). Look, it’s a real winner on all accounts is what I’m getting at here.
Junkhead vocalist and lyricist Josh Hill actually told us of their newest song that it was “…written during a time where I was frustrated at myself for putting myself in the same situations: making the same bad choices year after year, living with depression and anxiety but not looking after my mental health, and the desire to move past this but seemingly unable to.” So yes, ‘Pillar Of Salt‘ is most certainly a forsaken track lyrically and is thematically about someone metaphorically stumbling around in the dark (or literally in the below video); frustratingly running in circles of one’s own accord and merely repeating the same old toxic patterns as before. As per his own intent, Hill’s lyricism here does capture that dire personal mood very well.
To not waste any more of your time, ‘Pillar Of Salt‘ is really fucking good. You should go put it into your ear holes.