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B B * ISLAND

Simon Joyner

Pocket Moon

    "Singer-songwriter" is a frustratingly confining term; to truly understand exactly just how confining, look no further than the recorded works of Simon Joyner, an artist whose work consistently transcends the narrow parameters of genre classifications and record shop bin cards. Though his music has always honoured, reckoned with-wrestled with-the tradition set forth by his songwriting forebears (Cohen, Van Zandt, Ochs, Dylan, Reed to name a few), Joyner can always be counted on to defy expectations; as a lyricist, melodicist, and arranger, Joyner likes to keep us on our toes.

    She Keeps Bees

    Kinship

      A meditative and endlessly turning clutch of songs, She Keeps Bees' Kinship reasserts the band's elegant power in a stream of loss and regeneration. Death, birth, both personal and in reflection of Earth itself emerge through Jessica Larrabee's focused, empowered voice. With their first album in four years, She Keeps Bees peels away their distorted guitars and fills the void with hypnotic organ, keyboards, strings, a tight bed of drum grooves, and a direct lyricism full of with wisdom and intention.

      Twain

      Rare Feeling

        Twain is the solo project of Mt. (Mat) Davidson, a tender and evocative singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from Virginia. Having previously worked with the likes of The Low Anthem, The Deslondes and Spirit Family Reunion, Mt. Davidson started to write and self-record under the name Twain in the mid-2000s.

        His songs and sounds and his remarkable stage presence, whether solo or with his trio, steadily gained devoted listeners throughout the US indie-folk-circuit. Now BB*Island release his first official album and Europeans will be able to catch his live magic for the first time when he performs solo on the upcoming April dates with Courtney Marie Andrews.

        Alex Highton

        Welcome To Happiness

          Third album from Liverpool born singer-songwriter Alex Highton. Rather than the acoustic bucolic musings of "Woodditton Wives Club" ("a masterpiece," according to Heaven Magazine in Holland, "World class," said the Guardian) or his disconcerting take on existence that was "Nobody Knows Anything" ("Sufjan Stevens like audacity....4 Stars" Mojo Magazine"), his new album expands his sound into a something much more complex and sonically adventurous.

          As a kid his time was split between his native Liverpool and Florence, Italy, after his parents' divorce. Liverpool has a musical heritage that is impossible to escape but it was during the summers, whilst devouring his Dad's amazingly eclectic record collection , that his musical education began, taking in everything from Talking Heads & Penguin Cafe Orchestra to David Ackles & Bowie. He lost his twenties to bad decisions and then struggling through some kind of breakdown, he started to take songwriting seriously. The songs he wrote (part therapy / part love letter his new life) formed the basis of his debut album, a record replete with tales of rural S&M, mental, emotional and economic collapse, and ultimately salvation through love and family. For the new album Alex locked himself away in the studio with producer/multi instrumentalist Jonathan Czerwik, and started putting together the songs that would fill "Welcome To Happiness".

          In their downtime they discussed artists they loved and would inform the new album - Can, The Flaming Lips, Beck, Prince, Steely Dan, Bon Iver, Serge Gainsbourg, Here We Go Magic, The Beach Boys, Bowie, Neu, tons more..."We threw all this stuff into the pot and just said 'let's see what happens'. Witness "Benny Is A Heartbreaker" reminiscent of Hot Chip & Talking Heads with it's electro beats and slick grooves and "Love Is Enough", referencing David Ackles & Luis Bunuel but sounding like something cooked up by Luke Temple and ELO. 


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