BARB is a proper band! In a time where every rock star and their dog are joining forces - forming mildly celebrated, yet seemingly boring and predictable super-groups - comes the unique sound of BARB. With an Antipodeans darling line-up of Liam Finn, Lawrence Arabia, Connan Mockasin, Eliza-Jane and Seamus Ebbs, BARB aren't just counting on their individual indie laurels to get noticed in this dog-eat-dog existence.
It was a mutual respect, awe and enjoyment of each other's company that fuelled this project. With Liam Finn and live cohort Eliza-Jane's constant touring (since the release of Finn's solo debut I'll Be Lightning and successive co-release Champagne in Seashells), Lawrence Arabia's busy schedule after the critical success of Chant Darling (subsequently leading to NZ's highest songwriting honour with the Silver Scroll Award), Connan Mockasin's ever morphing musical exoskeleton - which, at last count had taken him back and forth from NZ to the UK 16 times in the last year alone, and resulted in the wondrous Please Turn Me Into The Snat - and the enigma that is Seamus Ebbs, BARB's drummer who hadn't been seen by anyone for 3 years, and was said to be living in a part of NZ considered by most to be mythical - it's no wonder that wrangling these 5 intriguing individuals together was the trickiest part of making this record
Seeding the first thoughts of BARB while all living in London, it took 3 years of fantasising, cross-pollinating and some humorous e-mail chains before these 5 friends found themselves back in NZ at Roundhead Studios, on the grim slopes of Newton, Auckland. "It seemed only natural" muses Liam. "We have been involved in each others music for so long... getting up to play at each others shows... touring together when possible, we knew starting a band together would be fun... but we had no idea what it would sound like."
BARB's sound however, can only be described as 'different'. Different from what the band expected, different from the crap you hear when you turn on the radio, different from the latest Danger Mouse production, probably different from what this bio will lead you to imagine. Lush reverbs lure you into an organic, yet sexy world, where you can't tell if you've gone 40 years back in time, or 40 years into the future. Psychedelic songs about lesbian lovers, boat trips up the Nile, and even a 4 year old's obsession with teen heart-throb Leonardo DiCaprio leave you imagining what BARB really got up to during those 4 weeks of writing and recording. When the 5 sing together it is glorious, and makes you feel like an excited child again, rollicking fun and mischief, with darker touches of the absurd and the sick, each element sounding as sincere as the other.
If the name BARB brings Pamela Anderson to mind - or possibly even the cruel design of a cat's penis - you're really in for a pleasant surprise. If BARB conjures up images of your auntie smoking a fag out on your Nana's porch? Fantastic! They only hope they will find a way into your accepting heart and contribute something exciting and new to this already evocative word. BARB!
With all 5 members off again on their individual pursuits, one ponders how they can possibly nurture this ethereal musical baby, but the Universe works in wondrous ways, and like the making of this record, the life of BARB will be fated yet spontaneous. To be released in the U.S. on Yep Roc, don't miss your chance to get involved and personal with this not so famous, dare we say SUPER-GROUP, called: BARB.