‘…a rock solid emotional track that zaps you in the chest’ – The Line of Best Fit
Charlie Barnes is a Midlands born singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Having spent much of his late teens and early twenties trekking around the UK and Europe peddling his emotionally intense music to various half empty cafes and bars, he signed to Sony imprint Superball Music in 2014 to release his debut album proper ‘More Stately Mansions’ the following year. The album was produced by Charlie’s friend and hero Steve Durose, guitarist with the bands Oceansize and Amplifier, both of which number highly amongst his biggest influences. Across its ten songs, the album shows off Charlie’s range as a writer, taking in huge, post-rock-esque walls of sound, delicate piano-led balladeering and rich, ornate orchestration.
Although taking in a wide variety of stylistic influence, it is Charlie’s distinctive and powerful voice, with echoes of Jeff Buckley, Matt Bellamy and Freddie Mercury, that ties the whole thing together. Shortly after the album was released, Charlie’s career took an unusual turn when he was hired by award-winning British pop act BASTILLE as a touring musician. The last couple of years have seen Charlie swap the half empty cafes for the big stages at festivals like Glastonbury and Lowlands, sold out arenas around the world, and TV shows including Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and Channel 4’s Sunday Brunch. Not that the hectic working schedule has got in his way; the follow up to Charlie’s debut album is currently in the works, and between various hotels, airport lounges and dressing rooms, he recently released a reworking of post-rock duo ALMA’s song ‘To The Stars’ with legendary indie label Fierce Panda. The song’s video, due for release in early 2017, was edited by Charlie’s longtime visual collaborator Ryan Pearce, who took slow motion footage of Charlie’s distinctive (read: TERRIBLE) dancing in various iconic locations around the USA, and treated them with bizarre effects to create a lo-fi, surreal viewing experience. Whether stood in the middle of a room with no amplification, belting out his rousing first single ‘Sing to God’, or tucked behind his array of electronic gadgets, layering up his heartbreaking falsetto on live favourite ‘Easy, Kid’,