Janus “Nox Aeris” CD Review

March 25, 2012 by: admin
Janus “Nox Aeris” CD Review, Released Monday, March 26th, 2012 via Realid/ILG
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By: Matty
On March 26th, Chicago-based band Janus is releasing their follow-up to their debut album entitled “Red Right Return” with a new full-length record entitled “Nox Aeris”.  Nox Aeris means “night air” in Latin.  When an individual associates various verbs, similes, and metaphors with “night air”, one might associate that with various adjectives such as haunting, melancholy, or brooding, simply because the night air can be mystifying, creepy, and yet beautiful and enlightening all in the same token.  Night Air can bring about the wintering of the soul and mysterious creatures, as well as troubling thoughts, while proclaiming the beauty of the stars and the moon in the sky, and the cool, liberating feeling of the night air in the same breath.  “Night Air” can definitely be a two-edged sword, and Janus makes their mark on the hard-rock world and comes up with this record.
“Nox Aeris” starts off with a hard-hitting, gut-punching track entitled “In Flames”, and the equally gut-punching first single entitled “Stains”.  These first two songs set the pace for this record.  The electronica and the ambiance fits into these first two tracks, as well as David Scotney’s screams, and the post-grunge guitar riffs, and the pounding, yet smooth flowing bass line.  All of these elements in the music are perfect for one another.  These tracks are brooding, discussing about the various challenges and obstacles of life, yet enlightening because they seem to challenge the listener to find a positive way out of the various problems and challenges of life.  “In Flames” and “Stains” were just good enough to make me want more.  “Lifeless” has such incredible harmonics in the guitars, yet can make the guitars sound chunky and harmonious in the same breath. ”Numb” dives into the subject of failed relationships, basically no matter how hard the person tries, the one that the individual loves doesn’t share the same feelings.  “Numb” is my favorite track, it packs punches full of emotion, angry guitar riffs, haunting whispers, and such a beautiful-groove oriented bass line.
The “Nox Aeris” album seems to get better and better as the album goes along and the more I listen to it.  This isn’t the type of album where you only select certain tracks to listen to.  If the listener did that, then they would miss out on the stories and the various concepts of the album.  Janus just does music well.  I have no other way to describe it.  Each chord that they play, each programming track with the vast array of keyboards and ambiance blend in perfectly like the secret ingredient to a five-star chef’s perfect concoction.  Every scream has a purpose behind it, every note sung is emotionally draining for the vocalist, and it causes the listener to show empathy towards the band, yet it’s healing in the same token.
In a world where it seems to me that the majority of mainstream rock is becoming too-formula based and staying in the comfort zone, Janus throws in a few protons and neutrons and they completely change the chemical equation on how to make a commercially viable, and commercially accessible hard-rock/metal album with “Nox Aeris”.
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