In the unpredictable sphere of indie music, few artists carve out an identity as distinctive as Jared Justen. Unabashedly introspective and painstakingly unique, Justen dances with theme and sound like a seasoned ballerina, twisting and twirling through a spectrum of emotions, as he harnesses the power of lyrical introspection and soulful melodies. This November, the prodigiously talented singer-songwriter prepares to launch his third album “A Bend in the Light,” a journey set to explore the physical and symbolic resonance of life’s elements.
Justen, a self-taught musician who first fell in love with the strum of a guitar during his college days, has spent years experimenting with a variety of genres, distilling his own unique sound from the tremors of pop, alternative rock, folk jazz and neo-soul. His music, lyrics imbued with existential conundrums and heartfelt sentiments, are a nod to his eclectic musical upbringing, echoing starlets of the folk arena, like Devendra Banhart and José González, with an indie flair reminiscent of Ben Harper.
The whispers of Justen’s influences shape his melody, but it’s his voice that carries the weight of his music, a tender lullaby that cuts through the noise. Still, as he readies his third album for release, fans, old and new, can find delight in his Spanish guitar’s rhythmic enchantment and the candid vocals woven through his previous tracks on Spotify.
His journey to emotional profundity began with open mic nights in Minneapolis/St. Paul. Crafting a path of his own, Justen explored the dimensions of acoustic guitar through open tunings, a simpler and cleaner approach that delivers each string’s purest tone. The result? Masterpieces like “Sky Align” and “Wolves Teeth,” that still shimmer with originality and depth.
“A Bend in the Light,” however, opens a new chapter in Justen’s musical narrative. Its earlier single, “New Crown,” premiered on Spotify in August, setting the stage for an album imbued with fluid tempos, acoustic landscapes, and the artist’s unmistakable, emotive vocals. Lighthouses, sunlight, searchlights, they all become part of Justen’s lyrical vision, building an ethereal tapestry that flutters between introspective melancholy and hopeful resilience.
Written, produced, and delivered flawlessly by Justen himself, “A Bend in the Light” was skillfully mixed by Richard Becker, with mastering by Adam Haggard. Each syllable, note, and rhythm steers listeners toward pristine clarity and emotional depth, resonating with an honesty that reverberates behind each instrumental and lyrical stroke.
The vocalist and acoustic virtuoso is set to step out of the shadows of his hometown, Mound, MN, with a sound shaped through the threads of immense dedication and innate talent. This album is a testament to Justen’s evolution as an artist, reflecting a richer production and a sonic tapestry that seizes the listener’s heart with every strum and syllable.
Inspired by a personal health scare tied to dehydration, “A Bend in the Light” dances on the enigma of water—its symbolism and its depth. Songs like “Arrow” and “Above the Water” seek solace in the transformative powers of water, while “Wake and See” and “Earth to Son” cast a broader net, tackling global and personal challenges with lyrical grace.
As the world awaits the release of his third album, it seems the multifaceted Justen is poised to capture hearts, minds and ears once again. Come November, “A Bend in the Light” promises to shine bright amid the cacophony of the music scene, a beacon guiding listeners through the tumultuous waves of life, one introspective melody at a time.
Stay updated by following Jared Justen on his website, Instagram, and Facebook to ride the waves of his musical odyssey. The world keeps spinning, but as it does, rest assured that there will be a bend in the light.