Barns Courtney live in Vancouver


In a couple of weeks Barns Courtney will be competing for festival goers attention on the Lagunitas stage at BottleRock 2017 along with fellow time-slot bands Fitz & The Tantrums, The Staves, and Catfish and the Bottlemen. Personally, I had been torn between wanting to catch Catfish and Barns. Oh those pesky festival dilemmas we just cannot avoid. Fortunately for me, Barns was set to play a fairly intimate show in Vancouver at the Biltmore Cabaret. My dilemma was over. I would catch him in Vancouver and then head down to catch Catfish. Or would I?

Barns may not have multiple LPs or EPs to choose to play from, but he put on one hell of a great show at the Biltmore to a very eager crowd. During his early played hit, “Glitter & Gold”, Barnaby had the crowd chanting along to the words with a little guys vs. girls effect which is sometimes awkward, but tonight it was well received.

He talked about wanting to kiss all of us on the mouth, some story of an interview which was more of a pole dance desire, his fondness of the yellow pick for its thickness, and then of course he played and sang with authority. At one point he told the crowd he was going to play a new song, which was basically just reverb and then he stopped. Jokingly he told the crowd that was the end of the song, and then he continued into picking away with a Michael Bernard Fitzgerald feel.

People continued to pour down into the Biltmore, probably missing the fact that it was a bit of an earlier show, so during some of the quietest times there was some annoying din but he easily overcame this issue and had the crowd quiet and in awe as he did “Hard to be Alone” solo on stage; just him and his keyboard.

Listening to Barns Courtney you get to have a few different styles shine through that all seem to have some deep south dirty blues sounds to them. Claiming that “Hell Fire” was just starting to be played live, you sensed that they had played it for years and it came across almost better than any other, but the amount of energy and strength in the vocals to a song that was called “Kicks” (on the setlist at least) stole the show for me and has left me rethinking missing even a moment of his show down in the Napa Valley.

I would not want to gloss over the openers but as I said, the show was an early one and I ended up missing much of their set. What I did manage to catch suggested that they were a lot of fun and that I missed something special, so be on the lookout for Foxtrax to come back.

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