With all the flair and knowledge of the Austin local act that they are, January & June’s voices meld to offer an equally as exotic concoction. Newcomers to the Austin Folk scene, only conceived in January of last year, the two women boast an empowered sound – they’re far from amateurs and there’s a pride in their music that forms an aura around it.
Recently having released their first EP, the self-titled debut opens with ‘The Island’ – mysterious and nondescript, the track’s title lures the listener in. A self-confessed song skipper, I fell down that rabbit hole and into the warm embrace of what I’m sure will soon be their recognizably signature sound.
Breathless tones meet you at the beginning of this track, accented and yet still perfectly offset by each other, soothing but startling with beauty at the same time. The unique, blues-y vocals of the duo complement the buoyant yet profoundly emotive track; it’s that sharp familiar shock of whiskey that numbs your toes, synonymous with a soft smile in a dimly lit room as you listen to the Arizona-bred pair. Their tones gushing luxuriously, sprouting wings and taking flight, as your scotch glistens in the mellow spotlight they sit in, perched on stools as they sing.
An interestingly retro take in modern day music, the two singer-songwriters Adara Ostdiek and Carissa Chiu don’t hide behind any pretense – nor do they need to. Their voices are bare and beautifully relaxing in a world where the ubiquity of standardized, auto-tuned music means it’s, unfortunately, a rare treat but a treat it is.
Author: Megan Matthews