New Music – Eastern Barbers, Big Thief, Touts
New sounds to kick back and dig from London, Brooklyn and Derry
Every week, we highlight a couple of new acts from around the globe who’ve caught our attention. Please feel free to share tips with us or check out all past New Music selections here.
South-East London calling in the shape of the whip-smart Eastern Barbers whose distinctive alt-pop has been gaining appreciative noises at festivals like Glastonbury in the last few months. “Maya” is one of the best tunes in their arsenal to date, a track full of suburban belt ennui, bittersweet romantic leanings and some sharp observational skills.
Debut album “Masterpiece” recently released on Saddle Creek is a serious statement of intent from this Brooklyn band with a great knack for writing tunes which stick for ages in your noggin. The main draw is the songwriting craft of frontwoman Adrianne Lenker whose lovely handle on folk nuances and brushstrokes, coupled with the band’s subtle skills when it comes to enhancing and emphasising these tunes, make for an album rich in atmosphere, melody and occasionally surprising heft.
2016 newcomers Touts deliver a hell of a great rattle on their debut track “Marty”. Derry trio Matthew Crossan, Micéal Sammon and Jason Fennan may class themselves as “a singer that can’t sing, a salmon that can’t swim and a drummer that can’t see” and may have hampered themselves previously with The Blue Jeans as their name, but none of that stops them belting out some fierce, passionate and bright throwback punk rock stomp. They’ve received early love from BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Radio One and there’s a debut four-track EP on the way produced by Rocky O’Reilly. One to watch for in the coming months.