With their debut single ‘More Bad Celebrity Poetry,’ London outfit Jarbird showed that they weren’t afraid to take silence head on. While the track built up into a tender ballad over time, it never became overwrought with emotion and let the lyrics do the talking. They left gaps in the instrumentation and started the track off so sparsely you’d be forgiven for thinking that it was going to turn into an almost acapella affair. It was made all the more heart-rending by a crushingly emotional video that was akin to the first five minutes of Up. And don’t say you didn’t cry at opening scenes of Up.
Their latest effort ‘Such Is The House’ luckily won’t have you reaching for the Kleenex but it does add another string to Jarbird‘s bow. It’s much less an attempt at emotional balladry and more a lesson in how to make a perfect semi-experimental R’n’B jam. Its skittering synth line, combined with frontman Ric’s soulful vocals, puts you in the mind of Night Out-era Metronomy, but less bombastic. They keep the tune restrained and pared back in terms of melody, but it all ends with a beautiful harmonised flourish. Jarbird are a band who clearly enjoy experimenting but use their talents as vocalists to form a strong and distinctive foundation on which to build their ideas. It’ll be intriguing to see what direction they take this formula next.
Words by Eugenie Johnson
Tipped by Rob Platts
Generator North East, The Manse, Kingsland Church Studios, Priory Green, Byker, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE6 2DW
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