Barrie – Canyons

As I meander back to dream-pop, I find myself entranced by Brooklyn based five piece Barrie.

Their sound is lush; humid even. Dripping with thick, heavy synth pads and hypnotic grooves, you can just imagine the atmosphere of their New York apartment block as they dream up ideas during warm summer nights. The result is a hazy kind of art-pop that pulls from influences of disco and surf rock. 

Canyons is a fine example of the pure escapism that this band offer. Whilst it was the first track that the band released back at the start of 2018, it strikes such a fine balance between syrupy sweetness and an enigmatic sense of distance – the sense of feelings not quite achieved. 

Vocals have a percussive element that ricochets off of the tightly compressed beat – the ethereal delivery reminds me of Aussie psych-poppers Tame Impala, which is hardly a bad thing. Deep and gutsy bass melody is emphasised by a fantastic selection of classic drum machine samples that add a touch of 80s to the proceedings. In fact, everything about this track from the expanse of tones to the sublime bass-line, exudes the confidence of a much more established act.  

Named after guitarist and singer, Barrie Lindsay, the story of how the band came to be is about as millennial as you can get. They each moved to Brooklyn from Boston, Baltimore, Brazil and well, London (Brixton?) to pursue their musical dreams, meeting on the recommendation of mutual friends, with bassist Sabine being recruited through Tinder. It seems the date went well, and more than just a one night stand, Barrie have been together for just over a year now. 

Their debut album Happy To Be Here is out on May the 3rd, to be released on the back of a pretty extensive US and European tour. Co-produced by Jake Aron, whose deft touch has contributed towards the widely acclaimed A Seat at the Table from Solange and last year’s indie breakthrough album Lush from Snail Mail, this could very well be one of the albums of 2019.