kevin barker You & Me (CD, £12.95)label: gnomonsong
This is Kevin Barker's debut album. Though it's his first solo release under his own name, Barker's no newcomer to the scene he's spent several years recording, touring and collaborating with Devendra Banhart, Joanna Newsom, Vashti Bunyan, Vetiver, Antony and the Johnsons, and Espers, to name just a few. Essentially acting as everyone's favourite sideman, Barker has influenced and helped create a sound with which this generation is happily familiar. During his college days, Barker became interested in the finger-style guitar playing of John Fahey and Bert Jansch and began to record under the name Currituck County. This solo project (sometime a duo with Vetiver/Espers drummer Otto Hauser) recorded several albums. Now Barker has assembled an unbelievable group of musicians for You & Me. Produced by Thom Monahan (Vetiver, Lilys, Gary Louris, Devendra Banhart), the album features Pat Sansone (Wilco), Joanna Newsom, Jonathan Wilson (Elvis Costello, Jenny Lewis), Eric Johnson (Shins, Fruit Bats) and Otto Hauser (Vetiver, Espers). Full of sunny, rural country rock, You & Me recalls the rustic grooves of The Band and The Grateful Dead, the heady melancholy of Roy Harper, and the golden harmonies of CSN&Y.
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