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EMILY BARKER Bound for home


After releasing her new album A Dark Murmuration of Words back in September last year, UK-based, Bridgetown-raised singer-songwriter Emily Barker is finally returning to home soil in WA to celebrate the launch. Joined by special guest Tanaya Harper for the long-awaited live return at Lyric’s Underground on Sunday, November 28, Barker will perform with full a band featuring Luke Dux on guitars, Caleb Quartermaine on drums and Lukas Drinkwater on bass.

“It feels so good to be home!” Barker said ahead of the show. “I’ve lived in the UK for 20 years now and it was incredibly unsettling to know that I didn’t have the option to return home the past couple of years…it’s surreal and brilliant to be somewhere where COVID currently doesn’t exist.”

Produced by Greg Freeman and recorded at StudiOwz, a converted chapel in the Welsh countryside, A Dark Murmuration of Words takes Barker’s clear, expressive vocals and warm acoustic aesthetic and subtly shifts her sound in the direction of contemporaries such as Laura Marling and Phoebe Bridgers.

Lyrically probing, by turns both dark and optimistic, Barker searches for meaning through the deafening clamour of fake news and algorithmically filtered conversation, delivering a timely exploration of the grand themes of our age through the lens of what it means to return “home.”

Throughout the ten songs that make up the album, Barker draws connections between the familial, the local, and the global: a mother sings to her unborn child, asking for its forgiveness on Strange Weather; When Stars Cannot Be Found explores the humbleness and comfort of the night sky when far away from home. Other highlights include the nostalgic Return Me, Woman Who Planted Trees, the defiant Machine and the effortless album closer Sonogram.

Emily Barker is an award-winning singer-songwriter, best known as the writer and performer of the theme to the BBC’s hugely successful crime drama Wallander starring Kenneth Branagh. She has released music as a solo artist as well as with various bands including The Red Clay Halo, Vena Portae and Applewood Road and has written for film, including composing the soundtrack for Jake Gavin’s lauded debut feature Hector starring Peter Mullan and Keith Allen.

Emily Barker hits Lyric’s Underground on Sunday, November 28. For more info and to buy tickets head to oztix.com.au