With the release of I’ve Got a Friend Called Emily Farris EP, How to Carve a Carrot Into a Rose EP and the double EP The Double EP: A Sea of Split Peas (which, from my understanding is a re-issuing of her first two EPs, combined into one package) and a highly praised appearance at the CMJ Marathon, the Melbourne, Australia-based singer/songwriter and guitarist Courtney Barnett quickly became an international indie rock sensation, as the Australian musician was praised by the North American, British and Australian press for witty, rambling, conversational lyrics delivered in an ironic deadpan. (Although to be fair, this was not overnight success as Barnett had long established herself as one of the Melbourne music scene’s preeminent guitarists as she played guitar for Brent DeBoer’s Dandy Warhol‘s side project, Immigrant Union; and was a featured player on Jen Cloher‘s third album, In Blood Memory.)
Barnett’s full-length debut, Sometimes I Sit and Think, Sometimes I Just Sit was released to critical praise earlier this year, and the album’s latest single “Nobody Really Cares If You Don’t Go To The Party” was promoted with a unique campaign that included scores of identical giant billboards, posters, and even murals springing up around the world; all declaring the same unattributed statement, in the same hand-writing. And although the campaign was mysterious and inventive, the actual song is comprised of huge, thundering drums, dense layers of swirling guitar chords, complete with a scorching guitar solo paired with Barnett’s bemused, ironic deadpan. Sonically and structurally, the song seems to owe a debt to 120 Minutes-era alternative/indie rock as it’s loud, furiously angsty with an anthemic, arena-friendly hook that you can imagine kids shouting at Madison Square Garden.
The recently released official video was actually shot and recorded the other day, by Jon White and it features footage from a completely unannounced live performance with Barnett’s backing band The CB3 in front of the Camden Town tube station in London. And from the footage it’s a wild, races set that should give you a sense of how their live set actually is.
Barnett will be embarking on a lengthy world tour, which includes sets at a couple of the world’s biggest festivals, a UK and EU leg, a homecoming Australian leg and a few dates opening for Blur at Madison Square Garden and Hollywood Bowl. Check out dates below and if you’re in any of these areas, go catch Barnett kick ass and take names.