New York City native Scott Barkan creates music to hold back the shadows of his hometown. Simply by the nature of the city’s expanse, music can have a tendency to fall into the cracks of its streets and alleyways and boroughs. But Barkan’s music, while at times understated and subtle, can build into powerful expressions of folk-rock and Americana aesthetics. Growing up in a Long Island suburb, he became obsessed with music at an early age and formed his first band, Barky, as way to explore his avant-rock/jazz tendencies.
He eventually began doing session work for artists from NYC to Los Angeles but soon realized that he wanted to shift his focus from technical fretwork to something more along the lines of the singers and songwriters with whom he’d been playing — though he would retain that technical prowess in his solo work. And so with that thought, he began recording his own records and diving headlong into his varied and extensive influences. Barkan is now gearing up for the release of his latest record, Flightless Bird, due out January 14th.
For our latest glimpse into the record, Barkan has shared the epic folk rocker, “Leaving Here,” and with its intricately picked guitar notes and deep, rumbling rhythms, the song digs deep into the heart of his musical roots, exploring aspects of folk, Americana, and southern rock. And even though Barkan draws from a variety of inspirations, the song never feels worn or simply the sum of its admittedly fascinating parts. There is a warmth and comfortable cohesiveness that ties the song together, allowing the notes to bend and condense at a moment’s notice. Barkan pulls together bits and pieces of a handful of genres into one definitive musical statement which proudly wears its influences on its sleeve.
Beats Per Minutes is pleased to premiere the second single, “Leaving Here,” from Scott Barkan’s upcoming album, Flightless Bird.