Justin Klump’s new three-song EP, The Night is Young, brilliantly explores memory of the past and participation in the present. It is an atmospheric ode to the mystery and wonder of endless possibilities. It celebrates the sparkle of light that can only be seen in the dark. It transmits that feeling of promise that comes from actively engaging in the world around us.
Many artists attempt to capture and express this feeling, and instead fall into saccharine caricatures of summer nights and young love in an attempt to guarantee an emotional response. Klump manages to avoid this trap. His songs evoke emotion, but get there by the purer method of quality writing. He doesn’t have to feign conviction or force it; it’s there, in the structure of the songs themselves.
The title song, “The Night is Young,” evokes this feeling right away. Its gorgeous instrumentation fills out a song that is both subtly reserved and full of spirit. “Slow Life Down” is a celebration of living in the present and making the most of every moment. Even the more pained “Pictures and Stains” continues the ultimately hopeful tone of the record.
The Night is Young demonstrates a natural expansion and increased maturity in Klump’s sound. One of the major differences since “Sticks and Stones” is the greater presence of accompanying instrumentation. The accompaniments add body to a soul that has been present in his songs from the start.
He has consistently proven his abilities as a strong acoustic songwriter, and The Night is Young is a demonstration that a fully orchestrated sound has been lurking in the background all along. The true test of the strength of these songs is in Klump’s ability to perform them unaccompanied and still fully express their vitality.
The Night is Young is an excellent step forward. It’s good listening, easy to follow, and, yet, its subtleties and complexities are engaging enough to keep it on repeat. Klump has hit a chord, and it hangs in the air with lasting resonance.
The Night is Young is available June 3rd on iTunes, http://justinklump.com, and other outlets. You can catch him frequently on Sirius XM’s “The Coffee House” channel, and here as well:
For more New York Minute Magazine Featured Artists, check here.
Images by Jon Karr
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