Ex Voto

by Djunah

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tehbluebear
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tehbluebear Happened across this album by chance and was hooked from the first listen. Crazy sound from a two-piece Favorite track: Built.
kstill
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kstill These two people know exactly what they are doing. And they mean it. I am glad they found each other and that we found them. The world will be okay after all. Favorite track: Animal Kingdom.
thomashorine
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thomashorine Powerful and beautiful. Vocals that are often Galás-like in ferocity and at other times are tremulous and haunting. Favorite track: Nurse and Nun.
Art Fin
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Art Fin Heaps of heavy, dissonant guitar, squals of feedback, relentless pounding and fierce vocals. Reminds me of Tiger Tank-era Speedy Ortiz but faster and louder. Favorite track: Animal Kingdom.
Conan Neutron
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Conan Neutron I've said a lot about Djunah, and I imagine I will in the future. Remarkable band with a unique sound, an iconoclastic presence and a leg for a bass player. Weighty and worthy art worth paying attention to. Dive in and see what they have to offer. RIYL: Brainiac, Marnie Stern, Oxbow, Le Butcherettes, early PJ Harvey... but they really have a voice all their own. Favorite track: Animal Kingdom.
Ryan Sundquist
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Ryan Sundquist Buy this album, follow Donna and Nick forever! The performance anxiety of writing a fitting review for this album will paralyze me no longer. Better your experience and support skilled talent. Every song is my favorite, every song has its own flavor and texture. This is brilliant and I am dumb, so how do I tell you when I don’t even know. It’ll be on repeat forever and I won’t notice, I’ll turn it off and it’s all I can hear. The lyrics are a distilled brew that terrify and empower. Favorite track: Brother.
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1.
Settle down. Don’t say my name, Give me those eyes, and walk back home. Don’t take risks. Don’t play games. Don’t play— When you get shy, you gotta go. Touched my dress, snatched my wrist. You better take your heavy coat. Your heavy coat. Ride on appetite. Itch when you think of me. You’ve got a soft spot, A sweet tooth, and big eyes for me. Eat out my hand. Rise at my command. She can’t hunt you like I do. So feed, big hands. My poor dear, it’s got so cold, And so late and still the road. Oh, where’d you put your heavy coat? Your heavy—
2.
Yarn 03:44
My head is a hell, and hell is a hall. I go back to the well, but the well is a wall. I was poured into steel with my arms open wide. It was damage to heal the damage aside. So what is envy now? What is home to house? I can’t stand you now. I can’t stand you now. I want to push you right off. There’s a flood on my hands with nowhere to fall My head is a wreck, and the page is a pall. What you doing in my house? What you doing in my house? What you doing in my house? What you doing in my house? I want to push you right off.
3.
Laud 05:10
They try to bury it. They try to bury it. They try to bury it. Naked teeth Hooked on me. Milk’s a drink. Raise a roar. Run the sink. Peach shove mouth. Shoe hit head. Tea sop hair. Toe crack door. I’m so bad. It’s February. Hearts are scary. Hearts— I was a boy. I wouldn’t wait. You sat on my heart while you whined. You won’t back down ’til a fight. I said it before, all of the time. Sorry I didn’t laud you in time. I loved you then. I think you’re right. One is a lie. One is a lie. One is a lie.
4.
I’m nurse and nun. Undertaker of men. All men cry upon my table. I’d give you the balm but you’re unable. I’m the worst nurse, ’Cause it ain’t in me. I tie them down. I feel no pity. And they cry until they’re empty. I’m nurse and nun. Undertaker of men. All men cry upon my table. I’d give you the cross but you’re unable. He was a bad man. They had to lift his energy off me. It was dark like a cloud, like a wisp of black smoke. They had to lift it off me like it was a net of black hair. And I arose. My name is Prunella. I’m at the height of my trajectory. I saw his face and I’m not scared. They said show it to her, she’s ready. I said show it to me, I’m not scared. I heal the sick. I raise the dead. I am Prunella. If you’re hurt, I’ll take my revenge. The day isn’t cold enough for this to sting. They laid me out on the table. What’s this light? What’s this rustling? It’s time. I rise. I take my revenge. Maybe I was twelve. Maybe fourteen. Maybe I was eighty-two or eighty-three. I carry it through this life. I bear every bit of that weight and I will not let them shatter me. My name is Prunella. My name is Prunella. And I’ll have my revenge.
5.
I caught you, July. I caught you, July, In my things like a child. What you thought you would find? I never wanted you, Hart for hind. I never figured out Your kind. Should. I stole your should. Oh good. Oh God, you’re good. I know I don’t know you, July. I don’t know the faces you know. January wasn’t all. I did not know that. Oh July, how could you lie? I know I steal, but when it’s right. Oh July, I don’t say boy, So where’s your heart? I know I don’t know you, July. I don’t know the faces you know. January wasn’t all. I did not know that. Like I ever wanted you. Like I ever wanted you. Should. I stole your should. Oh good. Oh God, you’re good. I know I don’t know you, July. I don’t know the faces you know. January wasn’t all. I did not know that.
6.
Cradle 00:40
Back in my cradle, Fetch me the ladle, Fetch me the serving spoon. I look so dead back in bed. Feed me or I’ll be gone soon. Sung by voices, Run by horses, Tracks go round in a tomb. I’ll never forget How we first met And died in the afternoon.
7.
You’re doing fine. Sins all align. The third fork’s three tines. Bless your money. Why all the cries? Your taxes are tithes. You’d welcome four reichs. Bless your money. Cross songs in their heads. Shot shells in their beds. They cock it all the time. It makes them feel white. Cross songs in your head. Shot shells in your bed. You cock it all the time. It makes you white. I bet you when they douse the lights, I bet you’re a don. I bet you when they douse the lights, You raise the right. You raise the right. You raise the right. Bless your money, bless your money. Bless your money, bless your money. You’re just heartless, id all the way, Eat out the maid, eat out the maid. Bless your money, bless your money. Bless your money, bless your money. Hate’s your harvest. Death to the state That made you that way. It makes you that way. Cross songs in your head. Shot shells in your bed. You cock it all the time. It makes you white. I bet you when they douse the lights, I bet you’re a don. I bet you when they douse the lights, You raise the right. You raise the right. You raise the right.
8.
Brother 05:46
It’s not fair. You’re not here. What a way to disappear. Take me out for a drive. I’m so weak. No, I’m just fine. I’m just high. It’s over now. Did I wake you, brother? From the heat of a wasted summer? Can two weepers find each other? I will wake you, brother. I gave up my control, And scratched my face For your ego. You’ve been up for a while. You don’t sleep and you don’t smile. You don’t try. I think I know why. Did I wake you, brother? From the heat of a wasted summer? Can two weepers find each other? I will wake you, brother. So hold the line until I find God. Just hold the line until I find God. The brain’s a liar. The brain’s a liar, I know. The heart’s a liar. The hand’s a wire to God. So hold the line until I find God. Just hold the line until I find God.
9.
Built 03:33
Oh, you’re so sure you’re big, well— Could you fit my—? Would you fit my—? Oh, you’re so sure you’re built well. Turn out the lights. Turn out the lights. Build. Build. Build. The nation’s on the line. The whites are out of time. And it “hurts their hearts.” Oh, you’re so sure you’re big, well— What gets you high Is love for a hate sign. “She’s a real kinda built tall.” I’ll still touch the sky And dig out on daylight. Build. Build. Build. You want it built. Your God’s a wall.
10.
Hand Videos 02:58
I like things that are intricate And made of metal And need to be fixed. I like cars. I like watching you drive. And how you press the pen when you write. No faces, just hands. Just for a moment, I could pretend to be you. And feel all the things you do. I wonder if then I’d know how you felt about me— If you scratch at your thumb when I’m around— If you tap your ring on the sink, or when I’m not there, You touch my things. Everything you do, I’d imagine was me. Like I’m a wire or a screw, Or a knob or a battery. Like I’m a cup or knock. Like every part of your life is Part of my body.
11.
Kiddo 02:50
To listen to you talk Is the price of green tea. To feed your self-worth The price of red bean. To taste something I’ve never had I’d give anything. We talk when you’re ready. Me, I don’t know. I’m just nothing. I know all about you. I know all about you. I take the abuse. I’d give anything. I’d give anything. I’d give anything.
12.
Passport denial. Send postcards and letters. Sheriff Arpaio. It makes no difference. They cut around my legs. Stop. To watch me hang. All night, I was in thrall. House, Senate, and Capitol Do I begin my war when they’re still Caught up in everyday shame? Fools Haven’t no other ways But their god is in my way. Stop. Hey, you won. You made me cry. When do you destroy the government? When do you destroy the government? Surround the place. I’ll be awhile. Corral the mace. I’ll be awhile. Cut around their heads. Stop. Watch them beg. When do you destroy the government? When do you destroy the government?

about

"An instant classic, like we’ve got a new Melvins on our hands." – New Noise Magazine

"An angular noise rock escalator run on power and beauty ... a record that should be heard by all music lovers, no matter what scene you are a part of." – CVLT Nation

"Seismic guitar ... 100% pure emotion ... You gotta see it to believe it." – Everything Is Noise

credits

released November 1, 2019

Donna Diane — guitar, moog bass, mouth
Nick Smalkowski — drums

Recorded and mixed by Kurt Ballou at God City Studio.
Assistant Engineer Zach Weeks.
Mastered by Bob Weston at Chicago Mastering Service.

Photography by Dave Rentauskas with Oscar Torres.
Styling by Alibe Brambila-Navarro.
Hair and makeup by Jen Brown.

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Djunah Chicago, Illinois

JUNE-uh

noise rock with a leg for a bassist

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