The debut studio album from rising Scottish artist Barry Can’t Swim marks a big step for him as a creative, going from releasing exclusively EP’s on record labels like Shall Not Fade and Technicolour – which were immensely impressive each and every time – to now having a fully fledged long player under his belt. He’s risen to the occasion like a veteran, and delivered one of our favourite albums of 2023. Bringing features from Northern Irish poet somedeadbeat, Falle Nioke, Blackboxx,
just lil, and known British talent Lapsley, Barry shows that he knows a thing or two about working with vocals, and despite the contrast in styles from spoken word, to pop ballad, to afro, he handles it all perfectly. The record includes plenty of his existing material, tracks like ‘Sonder’ and ‘Sunsleeper’ which have been dominating since early 2023 and most people will already know, to the newer titles such as ‘When Will We Land?’ and ‘I Won’t Let You Down’. The majority of the tracklist sticks to electronica and some form of house music, though there are plenty of well measured nods to jazz and afro in between too.
Where to start:
When Will We Land?: Colourful melodies meet punchy drums
Deadbeat Gospel: Filtered synth work and Irish poetry samples
How It Feels: Softened club basslines and pitched up vocal hooks
Previous from Barry Can’t Swim:
Amor Fati EP (2021, Shall Not Fade)
Like The Old Days EP (2022, Technicolour)
If you like this then check out:
DJ Seinfeld – Mirrors LP (2021, Ninja Tune)
TSHA – Capricorn Sun (2022, Ninja Tune)
Barry Can’t Swim – When Will We Land? LP is out now on Ninja Tune.