The past few weeks have seen the releases of a number of major albums from highly anticipated artists. So much so that I didn’t find time to do one of my favorite music-related activities – discovering new artists on the web. The last week should have been the perfect time for it too. It was CMJ, the annual musical fest in New York City where new bands travel to have their music be heard and be discovered (kind of like the East Coast SXSW) and I should have been doing a lot of discovering. This year’s event however, was unfortunately regulated to a side show due to the huge coverage regarding Arcade Fire‘s warehouse shows in Brooklyn at the same period. (Being a huge Arcade Fire fan), I myself was guilty of ignoring a lot of the CMJ news as I was streaming and reading about the much publicized Arcade Fire event.
I didn’t ignore all of CMJ however as I was able to do a little listening on the side. One name that came up a lot is Courtney Barnett, a 25-year old songwriter from Australia. Looking her up and listening to her music, I found there to a be a lot to like. Barnett sings and plays guitar in that easy lazy style that have come to define artists such as Kurt Vile. The songs are filled with breezy melodies, but Barnett fills them up with some of the cleverest lyrical turns mined from everyday mundane happenings.
Barnett just released a double EP, named appropriately enough, The Double EP: A Sea of Split Peas, which you can buy from her bandcamp page. (and also released by Barnett’s own label that she founded back home, Milk Records). The double EP is a combination of her two earlier EPs, I’ve got a friend called Emily Ferris and How to carve a carrot into a rose. If you’re still trying to understand what kind of music Courtney Barnett makes, those quirky album should give you a better idea of what to expect. I know I enjoyed it very much.
Stream the pretty awesome Avant Gardener, embedded below.