Michael Barnes – “Ghosts” (EP)
Peterborough born but Sheffield based singer, songwriter and musician Michael Barnes his just released his debut EP, “Ghosts”, a four track collection of electro-indie-synth songs to introduce his retro sounding, very British influenced first effort. Michael tells us: “After songwriting for a number of years, 2020 has been the culmination of my efforts. Catalysed by the unfortunate events that have affected us all this year, the EP was recorded and written within my kitchen”. This is DIY music in the best possible way and, as we shall see, the production quality belies it’s very makeshift approach and conception.
The EP kicks off with the title track with it’s synths and keyboards that sound very early Depeche Mode/Soft Cell. Michael’s vocal is sweet and young sounding as Michael attempts to escape the ghosts that surround him. “Those Eyes” enters the world of Yazoo meets Duran Duran with Michael’s ‘dripping’ vocals laying ever so delicately over the often spooky soundtrack of this much darker indie-pop tune. “Enemy” brightens things up and with a faster pace too as Michael tries to repair bridges as the enemy he once was but now wanting to be on ‘your’ side. I love the synth ending to this song that just oozes Vince Clarke.
Michael ends this EP with the guitar based slowey, “Without You”, a dream-pop, indie track that evokes memories of The Dream Academy. Michael writes about love, being alone and not wanting to live ‘without you’. Tender and moving, this is one of those understated songs that floats in the ear without any invitation and remains there. “Ghosts” is a brilliant debut for Michael as he gives his music to the masses and hopefully to find an audience with which to build on in the years to come. This deserves a listen, particularly for anyone of a ‘certain’ age who will remember those groups of the early 80’s, but also with some 90’s Britpop-indie band sounds as well. Make sure you banish some “Ghosts” this Winter and enjoy the rich new world of Michael Barnes.
For more about Michael, check out his official FACEBOOK page