This 'n' That
Title: This ’n’ That
Artist: Bare Jams
Release date: 01 May 2020
Catalogue Number: IXLBJS001 (DD1/LP1/CD1)
artwork by sophie bass
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CONFISCATED TOUR VANS/DRIVING BANS/700 MILE JOURNEYS TO SWISS ALP GIGS/COASTLINES/FESTIVALS/
KNEES-UPS/CIDER/WASHED-OUT MORNINGS/KNITTED JUMPERS/WINDOW VIEWS FROM OLD CARS DRIVING IN CONVOY/SOUTH WEST COUNTRYSIDE.
For ten years of playing together, collective experience has shaped and instilled the music Bare Jams record and perform. Whether it’s as teens skipping school to busk in West Country villages, touring for weeks through the mountain roads of the Alps, gigging at Glastonbury, Boomtown, in London and Paris; and from skanking the night away in the German Black Forest; to pale mornings and waning spirits. These experiences are fixed in the music and the players, and the effect is brought to every gig and every record. Their danceable + confessional blend of reggae, soul and roots brings an electric sense of vitality, of life’s natural ups and downs, and a sense that if we’re good to each other things will be OK.
In 2011, after a year trialling busking material on their local streets, then 17-year olds, drummer Sam James and singer Ollie Coombes got hold of a secondhand Fiesta, chucked their kit in the boot and whipped it relentlessly to gigs along the jurassic coastline, then across the country with bassist Dave Tyler. The three studied music together at ACM - living in the Guildford YMCA, writing and performing at local venues. In 2015, after five years of gigging, they holed up at Larkins Farm to record the Cold Treats EP with Dave Tyler and prodigious horns don Seb Skelly, whose brass arrangements laid an even greater electricity through the band’s sound, heightening the danceable as well as the reflective moments in the record. Cold Treats also saw them team up with producer Tom Loffman, and begin to carve out the sound (neck-snapping backbeat, rousing horns) that would come to define later single collections Ebbs and Flows, Wasting Time and Fish Bowl.
Since then they’ve covered 50,000 miles in tour vans and/or convoyed hatchbacks, picking up fans along the way in The Netherlands, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, and across the UK. Moved by a compulsion to create good music and good times amongst friends, their live show is famous for bringing an unpretentious, cosmic knees-up.
Collectivism makes it to the heart of everything Bare Jams do, writing both music and lyrics through workshops and joint sessions. For their new record This ’n’ That the band have rejoined forces with Loffman and gone back to Larkins Farm, a return, full circle, to their most characteristic sound. This ’n’ That is out on 01st May 2020, via IXCHEL.
Vocals and Guitar - Ollie Coombes
Backing Vocals, Keyboards and Synths - Josh Parmenter
Bass - Dave Tyler
Drums and Percussion - Sam James
Percussion (Tracks 3 & 9) - Dom Brench
Trumpet, Flugelhorn and Keyboards - Seb Skelly
Alto & Bari Sax, Flute (Track 4) - Jake Heath
Tenor Sax, Flute (Track 8) - Oscar Ives-Owen
Trombone (Tracks 3 & 9) - Nick Smith
Keyboards, Guitar and Percussion - Tom Loffman
All tracks composed by: Bare Jams
Recorded at: Giant Wafer Studios, Llandrindod Wells, 2019 (Tracks 1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8 & 10)
Music Room London, New Cross, 2018 (Tracks 3 & 9)
Kyoto Recording Studio, Larkins Farm, Essex, 2019 (Track 6)
Produced by: Tom Loffman and Bare Jams
Mixed by: Tom Loffman
Mastered by: Guy Davie at Electric Mastering.
Art Direction by: Charlie Jungle (www.ixchel.uk)
Artwork by: Sophie Bass (www.sophiebass.co.uk)
Photography by: Seb JJ Peters (www.sebjjp.com)
Words by: Leo Donlan (www.ixchel.uk)