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The Crack Magazine

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Feel the Byrne

From Buffalo in New York, Julie Byrne’s stunning take on warm indie-folk is nothing less than captivating, and she’ll be beguiling us all over again when she visits The Glasshouse in Gateshead this summer.

I fell for Julie Byrne – hard – when she released her brilliant ‘The Greater Wings’ album last year. It’s a release that explores the grief she felt after the death of her musical collaborator and romantic partner Eric Littmann and, wow, it’s all kinds of incredible. For a kick off, she has one of those voices – rather like Karen Carpenter – that hold you absolutely rapt, those minor chords sending you to the stars and back. Sonically, it sees her expanding on her guitar-based compositions, effortlessly bringing strings and synths into the fold. And despite the subject matter, it’s an album that never feels depressing. As critic Marcy Donelson said: “While grief and heartache are constant undertones here, they are often outshone by emotions like gratitude and anticipation.” Plenty of other critics agreed at publications like the Guardian (who slapped a five-star review on it), PopMatters (9 out of 10) and Pitchfork (8.5 out of 10). A real generational talent, she has the ability to hold a room in the palm of her hand so be prepared to fall completely under her spell when she visits us this summer. DP

Julie Byrne, Thursday 25 July, The Glasshouse, Gateshead, 8pm, £22, theglasshouseicm.org

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