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BARBAROSSA

barbarossa

BARBAROSSA is the name singer/songwriter James Mathé goes under. His first release was a mini album called Sea Like Blood, which was immediately picked up by FENCE records. His debut full-length album Chemical Campfires was also released by FENCE.

Here are some nice things some nice journalists said about Chemical Campfires:

Album of the week Rough trade
Immaculately constructed album of forward facing folk…without blemish The Word
Fresh as the winter months when it was conceived Uncut
Chemical Campfires perches on the cusp of folk and pop…fiery metaphors..mellifluous harmonies and genial groove The Independent

Music from both ‘Sea like blood’ and ‘Chemical campfires) have been used on Channel 4’s ‘Sugar Rush’ and the US series ‘How I met your Mother’.

More recently James has supported Anna Calvi, Johnny Flynn and the Sussex Wit (he plays keys and sings harmonies with Johnny), Junip (Jose Gonzales’ new band) and Francois and the Atlas Mountains.

He is now using vintage casio keyboards, an omnichord, 808 drum machine, and layered electric guitar as a backdrop for his heartfelt soulful vocal melodies.

James released The Bedrume Cassettes EP at the end of 2010 exclusively into the Rough Trade East store and on their website, which had a great response from the blogs including ‘Song of the day’ from The Line of Best Fit. He then released Memory Laps EP in May 2011 that was also received very well including recent support from Marc Riley at BBC Radio 6 Music.

His next release will be the ‘Butterfly Plague EP’ which will come out on Fence records in June 2012. The video received an exclusive premiere on the 405 music blog. See it here: http://thefourohfive.com/tv/barbarossa-butterfly-plague-405-premiere. The video features the actress Zawe Ashton who plays Vod in Channel 4′s Fresh Meat. It is already gathering momentum on the blogs and in the press, with Clash Music calling it a ‘Gloriously off kilter piece of home made psych’.

The new album, Bloodlines,  was recorded in the latter part of 2011 at a totally analogue studio in Manchester called ‘Analogue Catalogue’. James was joined by regular live band members Ben Brown (Drums) and Adam Beach (guitar,bass). The album was produced by Adem Ilhan (Fridge, Silver Columns, Adem) who also lent some of his musical chops to a few of the tracks. Bloodlines was mixed by Adem and John Baccigaluppi (Sea of Bees) back to analogue tape through a vintage Neve console and EMT valve reverb unit at John's Hangar Studios (Wild Flag, Thee Oh Sees, Devendra Banhart). The album is due out late 2012.