Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Review: Sleeping Operator by The Barr Brothers


Canadian foursome raise the bar with second album...

It’s clear from the get-go that The Barr Brothers are upping the ante on their second record, The Sleeping Operator. From the enticingly slow build of ‘Static Orphans’ - complete with Sarah PagĂ©’s dreamy mystical harp (and flute) - flowing into the big and bold boom of ‘Love Ain’t Enough’, this is a band ready to step away from the camp-fire and embrace larger rooms. The similarities between the choruses of The Beatles’ ‘Don’t Let Me Down’ and ‘Come In The Water’ (complete with stop...and then hit them with everything you’ve got) are so striking, the mind doesn’t have to wander far to imagine a furred-up Brad Barr causing a stir atop a roof circa 1969. Bluesy monster ‘Half Crazy’ sees the foursome ride the elevator straight down to the basement, smoky eyes tearing up the moment the doors slide open to reveal a seedier type of joint for the Quebecans to revel in before the epiphany-rousing ‘England’, led by Andrew Barr’s defiant beat, bursts through the fire-exit, tromping head hel high out into the morning light.


Though the Canadian quartet’s latest audio adventure is not all confined to an urban setting. The open road embrace of ‘Even The Darkness Has Arms’ and riverside roll of ‘Little Lover’ shows Brad, Sarah, Andrew and Andre haven’t quite turned city slickers just yet. More prone to the epic than buddies The Low Anthem and a little more polished than peers The Felice Brothers, The Barr Brothers are (a little less) quietly carving out their own route on the well travelled alt-country road.

Full tracklist:
1. Static Orphans
2. Love Ain't Enough
3. Wolves
4. Even the Darkness Has Arms
5. Come in the Water
6. Little Lover
7. How the Heroine Dies
8. Valhallas
9. Half Crazy
10. Bring Me Your Love
11. England
12. The Bear at the Window
13. Please Let Me Let it Go


For more on The Barr Brothers visit:

- Sleeping Operator by The Barr Brothers is out 3rd October 2014
- The Barr Brothers play Whelan's 24th October and Sligo Live Festival 26th October



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