Bahamas: Barchords

(Brushfire Records)

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Relaxed, soulful melodies and direct, earnest lyrics saturate the songs on Barchords, the new release from Bahamas, the stage name for Canadian musician Afie Jurvanen.  The album is a very strong sophomore release from Jurvanen (formerly with Feist) thanks to its originality and tone, which makes it easy to listen to with what should be a vast appeal.

“Lost In The Light” recalls a later Bob Dylan feeling and sets a laid back tone immediately followed up with songs like “Caught Me Thinking” and “Okay Alright I’m Alive,” which keep the same vibe, but change tempo and add some wonderfully bright variations to the mix along with some excellent guitar moves. Some of the other standout tracks include the poppy “I Got You Babe,” which is not a Sonny and Cher cover by the way, and the heart-dragging “Snow Plow.”

It doesn’t take much consideration to put this album up on the list of favorites this year because its rare for an album with this kind of uniqueness and consistent strength to come around, especially from someone who isn’t so well-known, but after this it’s likely we’ll all be hearing a lot more from Bahamas in the coming years.

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About Tim Needles

Tim Needles is an artist, photographer, humorist, and writer from Long Island, NY. His writing and art work has been seen in multiple exhibitions and publications around New York as well as the Photographer’s Forum, French Photo, the New York Times, and LI Pulse magazine. He is also an educator and currently teaches art and film at Smithtown, NY and as an Education Leader for Adobe. He was recently the recipient of the Robert Rauschenberg Award in Washington DC and serves as the director of Strictly Students, a non-for-profit group for media and education. His work can be seen on his website: www.timneedles.com
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