In his first apartment in the new city, Brad Barr shared an adjoining wall with Sarah Page, a classically trained harpist from Montreal with a propensity for the experimental. As tender and visceral as she is virtuosic, her melodies would seep through the cracks of the wall and into the music Brad was writing. From this nebulous relationship, a friendship developed and the brothers Brad and Andrew (drums), with Sarah, began recording and performing around Montreal. Soon, their friend and multi-instrumentalist Andres Vial was brought in to lend his wide array of expertise to the outfit, playing keyboards, bass, vibes, percussion, and singing. They called themselves The Barr Brothers. With Brad's songs setting the context for the agile imaginations of the other musicians, a unique sound was born, one reliant on interwoven string arrangements, wide open spaces, and a multitude of musical traditions.
Recorded in their makeshift studio in an old boiler room at the foot of Mount Royal, the ten song album The Barr Brothers was written over the course of the brother's time in a city full of strangers, lovers, old ghosts and new friends. Along with Sarah and Andres, the record also features Miles Perkin (Lhasa De Sela), Elizabeth Powell (Land of Talk), Nathan Moore, Jocie Adams (The Low Anthem), Elvis Perkins and Emma Baxter. It reads like a dusty journal of a traveler at the crossroads of good and evil. Hushed Americana lonesome and future-primitive delta blues clear the path for West African polyrhythms and classical motifs. It’s all tied together by the commitment to the sources of the styles and their inherent connections to each other.