Stepping out of the legendary punk band Avail and into bare feet and the occasional tour bus Tim Barry has carved his name in the hearts of alt country fans everywhere. From the opening strains of Laurel Street Demos’ Idle Idylist to his presence on the Revival Tour, he is a powerhouse. His songs evoke the kind of emotion that Southerners grasp on a level not available to the rest of the world. From train songs to heartbreaks Tim covers the range. His influences range from punk to vintage country and his songwriting shows it. While I refer to his music as alt country it really transcends the genre. There is an honesty to this music that is rare in any genre. You can listen to a few of these songs and say “Mr. Barry your punk is showing” and not be off the mark and still on others you can hear the haunting melodies of the country greats. I don’t think any music fan won’t find something to like in Tim’s catalog.
I have missed him the last couple of times he has been through Houston and it is much to my dismay. I don’t have a single cool story to tell about this man. In fact I am pretty much a new fan. I had heard his name floating around amongst my musical peers but I had never listened to his solo music. I had been an Avail fan for a long while but for some reason I had skipped Tim’s solo career. Last year I got a copy of the Revival Tour’s stop in Denver and Dog Bumped was the first time I had ever heard Tim Barry. Since then I have procured all of his released music and it’s been in heavy rotation since I first bought Laurel Street Demos last year. Much like most of the other intros I have put up Tim is a Suburban Home Records Artist and that’s, at least around these parts, a mark in his favor. While his solo catalog is small compared to bands like Drag The River there is so much ground covered in the few LPs he has released that it never ceases to amaze. Choosing these tracks was no easy task and I did sit and ponder which tracks to include. I hope that I have done Mr. Barry justice in my choices.
(I did things a little differently on this set of tapes and included the albums in the ID3 tags so there isn’t a track to album list for each tape. You’ll just have to buy them all!)
Tape 2 is two tracks off of each of Avail’s full length albums. Tim’s method of delivery may have changed but these tracks will show you that from his humble punk rock beginnings to his quieter method these days the intensity hasn’t gone anywhere. I couldn’t choose a favorite part of Tim’s career if I tried. Although Pink Houses holds a special place in my heart. I probably listen to more of his solo stuff nowadays but that’s just where I am at. Also I’m old…and GET OFF MY LAWN!
Tim has a new album in the works so be sure to keep your eyes on Suburban Home Records for more details…(Editors Note: Or, you can just keep coming around here…we’ll let you know when it’s released…believe you me.)