barry can’t swim
Edinburgh born, London Based producer Barry Can’t Swim (real name Joshua Mannie) returns to Ninja Tune imprint Technicolour with the announcement of “More Content” – a forthcoming, 4-track EP marking the classically trained artists first solo release for the label. The record is a unique blend of skillfully crafted electronic production mixed with Barry’s trademark Jazz inspired strings and keys, channelling the fluidity and flow of a live performance.
Opening single ‘God Is The Space Between Us (featuring Taite Imogen)’ is a continuation of one of Barry’s older releases ‘Lone Raver’. “They were both written in the same setting, being isolated during lockdown, and feeling reflective” he comments, “I wanted to retain some sounds and elements of ‘Lone Raver’ in this song because I felt like they’re part of the same experience”. His inspiration for the track and its title comes from the 90’s film “Before Sunrise” in which he pulls this quote as a direct source of influence – “You know I believe if there’s any kind of God, it wouldn’t be in any of us. Not you or me, but just, this little space in between” – from the film. “I love that quote” he adds, “I think what she’s saying is that God and love isn’t something you can own or acquire, but something that exists in empty space that connects people. It’s always been there, and we tap in and out of it at various points in our lives. That was something I really wanted to articulate with the sound of this song”.
Elsewhere on the record we hear nostalgic and melancholic tones on ‘Can We Still Be Friends?’ featuring fellow producer Laurence Guy – a collaboration that came about organically, being fans of each other’s music they got in the studio after bumping into one another one evening. The EP comes to an all consuming high on the 4th and final track ‘Fiorucci Made Me Hardcore’ – aptly named after a 1999 rave documentary by Mark Leckey, capturing Britain’s underground club scene – in which Barry takes influence from a mixture of influential UK sounds, from Jungle through to Garage and Dubstep. “Living in London you hear so many different styles of music just walking about, out of cars or flats and shops, I wanted to channel that energy and appreciation of those genres”.
The record reflects the lively vigour of recent single ‘Blackpool Boulevard’, released last year in collaboration with rising artist Anish Kumar and lead to Billboard voting Barry Can’t swim as one of their ‘10 Dance Artists To Watch in 2022’. The track received amazing support (scoring a spot on the BBC Radio 1 playlist) from the likes of Pete Tong (Top 20 Countdown of 2021’s Essential New Tunes) who described the record as “an utterly infectious modern dancefloor classic”. Additional support came from Danny Howard (Hottest Record), Sarah Story, Clara Amfo, Jaguar and Jack Saunders. Barry was tipped as The Blessed Madonna’s ‘Ones To Watch for 22’ and Annie Mac’s ‘New Names for 2021’. Mixmag also voted the track as one of their ‘Best Tracks of the Year’ saying, “The joint tune from the pair brandishes a sublime orchestral lead up to its dancefloor-moving, four-to-the-floor finale.”
Barry is excited to head off on tour in the coming months with stops in Edinburgh and London, alongside debut shows in Portugal, Italy, Ibiza and the US. He’ll also be hitting a number of UK festivals this summer including Lost Village, Sundown Festival and Yurt City.
“More Content” is out 24th June on Technicolour.