That The Barr Brothers last album, like their live performances, was fuelled by improvisation and a desire to allow songs to materialize organically rather than be arranged should come as no surprise. Formative time spent by the brothers as part of a jam band trio might help explain the heavily textured, lush and spacious sounds of “Look Before It Changes,” the second track on Queens of the Breakers, as it transcends previously applied tags of new Americana and indie folk, instead operating in their own lush, singular stratosphere. The Barr Brothers sound is subtly international, incorporating touches of west African influences and Appalachian gothic underneath the swirling, atmospheric songs. It’s a sound that seems to evolve in new directions each time they jam. Flourishes of finger picking and vocal harmonies touch Delta roots, while others wouldn’t be out of place in the David Fridmann-produced era of the Flaming Lips. While each song slowly morphs into its own identity, The Barr Brothers deftly weave them together into an impressionistic scrapbook lovingly curated by artists in full command of their form.
Biography by Derek McEwen