Bahamas – Barchords

January 01, 1970

(Brushfire)

 

www.brushfirerecords.com

 

With lasts year’s
U.S. release of Pink Strat, Bahamas
(the chosen moniker for Afie Jurvanen’s solo work) turned in a solid debut of
stripped down front porch sing-alongs that was as brilliant as it was simple. Though
that record took years to finally make it across the border after success in
the musician’s native Canada,
with the follow up, Barchords, he
proves there was clearly more notebooks full of similarly powerful, though
relatively sparse songs.

 

This year’s
offering builds on his debut, taking a few more risks – many of which pay off,
some which don’t – leading to a more melancholy vibe (“Snowplow” and the
blatant misnomer “Overjoyed” among them). But Jurvanen is best when rocking a slightly
more upbeat vibe like “Lost in the Light,” “Caught Me Thinking” or “Okay
Alright I’m Alive,” quite possibly the best break up song since Gloria Gaynor’s
“I Will Survive”. But don’t confuse lo-fi for indie pretentiousness. He can
churn out a pop song just as good as any of the judges on The Voice. It’s just
that Jurvanen’s pop songs happen to be backed by insightful lyrics that only
appear to be effortless.

 

After years spent on
the side of the stage as the go-to guitarist/pianist for fellow Canadians like Feist
and Howie Beck, Jurvaven remains pleasantly understated as a frontman, letting
his voice and knack for raw melodies take the focus, which is a little
refreshing in the current over-the-top style over substance world of rock
music.

 

DOWNLOAD: “Lost in
the Light,” “Any Other Way” and “Caught Me Thinking” JOHN B. MOORE

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