Fri, May 4, 2012, 01:00

BarchordsBrushfire ****

No doubt Afie Jurvanen’s connections have helped him get through a couple of doors. Leave aside his longtime role as Feist’s guitar man and the record deal with surfer-dude Jack Johnson’s label – it’s the tunes on his second album, Barchords, that really entice you to push up and get closer. Jurvanen’s stock-in-trade is beautifully sparse pop tunes, which run the gamut from breezy, hazy, sub-tropical surfpop (Caught Me Thinking, Okay, Alright, I’m Alive) to haunted tales from desolation row (Snowplow, I Got You Babe). Jurvanen’s canny, confident way of maintaining oceans of space around the arrangements and his fine, timeless, occasionally Neil Young-esque voice shape songs that are to be savoured deeply. Add in his skill at sculpting a line or chorus that takes up residency in your skull for days and you’ve got an album with delights aplenty.

Download tracks:Caught Me Thinking, Okay, Alright, I’m Alive, Your Sweet Touch