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Friday
Apr252014

COURTNEY BARNETT - The Double EP: A Sea Of Split Peas

We were intrigued last fall by writeups in the British music mags that the shop carries concerning an Australian songwriter who kept being referred to as a 'slacker Sheryl Crow,' or something thereabout. Courtney Barnett's Double EP: A Sea Of Split Peas exceeded our buzz-based expectations, though: her easygoing vocals and everyday narratives are complemented by poppy melodies and sturdy guitar work. We had to
wait until April 15th for the domestic release of her two EPs, but it looks like Barnett will be spending much more time in North America. She performed on the Jimmy Fallon show last night and will be playing in Toronto (for the first time!) this June as part of NXNE.

"The temptation with a words-first artist like Barnett is to conceive of the music as a word-delivery system, to get all the lyrics out and then to end the song as quickly and cleanly as possible when that’s done. But that’s not how Barnett rolls. She and her band play it shaggy and expansive and vaguely traditional...but they’re just one part. Pianos and organs overlap and dart in and out of each other. The riffs have real bite to them, and triumphant guitar solos sometimes flare up from the landscape around them. Songs regularly spread themselves lazily across six or seven minutes. The construction is never exactly tight; there’s some Pavement in the way things happen according to their own oblique logic (there’s probably also some Lemonheads in the sunny-stoner vibes that waft through from time to time, too), but this isn’t an indie record. I get the feeling that, if you called Barnett’s music 'bluesy,' she would not take it as an insult...But what Barnett chases musically is the loose immediacy of classic rock, and she gets the way that stuff works much more than the various '70s revivalists on the festival circuit seem to manage." - Stereogum

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