Lincoln Barr will release his solo debut Trembling Frames on the 10th of February. He is the frontman of a great soul-tinged pop group Red Jacket Mine that I’ve covered here a few times over the years.
Trembling Frames is a wonderful album and I’m struggling to find the words that would do it justice. The album is deeply personal, vulnerable and brave and revolves around physically abusive childhood. There’s a bit of a contrast with the heavy issues of the songs and the beautiful, warmhearted jazzy vocal pop of the music. Sure there’s painful melancholy in the music too, but for the most parts I would probably be smiling, if I didn’t pay attention to the words. I find that the certain lightness and warmness makes this even more moving and it’s impossible to not get a little teary-eyed when listening to this courageous album. Trembling Frames is such a perfectly fitting title. Just like the songs hide heavy and sad things underneath the sweet sounds, there’s also no way of knowing what kind of personal battles each of us go through even if we put on a brave face. That’s one more reason why we should forget the judgement and hatred that is polluting the world. Let’s hug a friend or stranger and just love each other.
The album was recorded with a stellar cast of studio musicians including Calexico’s Joey Convertino on the drums. The music takes a lot of influence from the great American songbook. There’s also a lot of jazz vibes and Bacharach-ian structures. Trembling Frames might not be easy listening, but it’s not that uncomfortable either, because I feel like there’s hope and remedy in between the lines. It actually turns out to be very enjoyable, but I really don’t have the proper words to do justice to such a powerful and personal album. You’ll need to hear this spectacular and remarkable pop album yourself. Here are Desperate Tormentors and How To Escape from Lincoln Barr’s wonderful solo debut.