BARK CAT BARK – A Lifi (Own Label)

Bark Cat Bark is the solo project of UK born but Paris based multi-instrumentalist Josh Todd, and this self-produced album is a superb post-rock effort. ‘Verona’ is a haunting piece on piano, violin and classical guitar, with an accordian solo to boot, and is a perfect introduction to the laid-back simplicity of his music. ‘Lac Pavin’ is another evocative piece on piano and violin, and on listening to the way the instruments interweave it is hard to believe that this is the work of just one man. The New-Age sounding ‘Galatia’ has a hint of Mike Oldfield in the use of reed organ, and (rather odd choice of) recent single ‘Iceland’ is solo piano with sound effects creeping in at the end. A much better solo piano piece is the lovely ‘Hop’, and this is followed by the equally moving ‘Pere Lachaise’, both showing Todd’s love of European classical music. The title track is a guitar led piece with a full band backing, and ‘Palermo A Larino’ has another appearance by the accordian, but this time in a more subdued role behind a cinematic, film theme styled tune. ‘Anorev’ closes the album with another beautiful solo piano piece, with its deceptively simple melody being played with real emotion. This album was both a surprise and a delight to hear, and while I would hesitate to label this music as New Age, it does have that relaxing feel to it, making it perfect to put on after a hard day at work. Being a one man band even extends to marketing of the album, which is available from Todd’s myspace page, where amazingly you find out that despite being just eighteen years old this is his seventh album, with another on the way. Check out the samples on myspace to see if you are as captivated by him as I was.