Jour Majesty is essentially singer/songwriter Michael Perry and some gifted musical cohorts. Hailing from Los Angeles, Perry writes traditional country/folk songs combined with a modern lyrical style and production. I can detect influences from older songwriters like Buck Owens, Gram Parsons and the rootsy Americana of The Band, along with more modern artists in the country/folk genre like Ryan Adams and Jake Bugg.
The band’s first release, the Three Winks EP received widespread critical acclaim (including from yours truly) and garnered extensive radio airplay in both the UK and on the US based streaming service Pandora.
This song, Empty Box Of Wine, is a track off their forthcoming debut album which is to be released in 2016. It showcases what Jour Majesty do best; finely crafted and performed folk pop/Americana with emotive, poetic lyrics which combine to produce a warmth and intimacy that’s missing from much of modern music. Michael Perry’s slightly quirky voice and heartfelt vocal delivery also helps to give the song a sense of authenticity.
The song is a nicely drawn portrait of a struggling relationship. After an understated verse of picked acoustic (and clean electric) guitar, the chorus is aided by a gorgeous subtle bed of female vocal harmonies which lifts the music and blends nicely with Perry’s lead vocal. The poignant lyrics tell the emotional story with a series of images: ‘Hearts spinning in motion, car lights hypnotizing, an empty box of wine…black wings waving, a street car misbehaving and you were gone…’.
Overall, this is a superb single that takes traditional genres and brings them into the modern era, the high quality sheen of the production giving it real potential in a commercial sense. With a debut album to follow next year Jour Majesty could become highly successful, especially as the market for folk/pop has never been bigger since the worldwide success of Mumford and Sons.
Verdict: 8.6 out of 10