Though it does not exactly light a fire in the passions, the new single from UK band Kosoti certainly makes a highly flavoursome and satisfying appetiser for things to come. Bark and Sticks is an intriguing festival of healthy emotion and strong engaging sounds, a track which lingers long after its departure and incites a keen appetite for the band ahead. As mentioned it does not set the heart ablaze but easily reinforces the Newcastle sextet as a thoroughly tantalising proposition.
The seeds of the band, and certainly its impassioned sound, seems to have come from a near death experience in 2013 for vocalist/guitarist/songwriter Allan Hyslop, the press release for the single stating that he ‘realised that he should treasure every moment of his life doing what he loved, MUSIC!’. That emotion and emotional intensity is a rich soak to Bark and Sticks, and a band which from forming last year was soon impressing through the double A-sided single War/Pirouettes and soon after the Cradle EP. With a settled line-up of guitarist Seth Tinsley, bassist Christos Worsley, drummer George Hutton, vocalist Rebecca Gregson, and Paul Holdsworth on banjo alongside Hyslop, Kosoti has evolved new twists to their sound and drive to their creative flame. Bark and Sticks is the evidence, a song which may not set the world alight but definitely gives it a warm enticing glow in anticipation of greater things from the band with its enterprising mix of folk and pop rock adventure.
A guitar caress and charming harmonies open up the song before a pulsating bassline alongside melodic enticement, wraps the ear as the warm grainy tones of Hyslop begins the song’s home town inspired narrative. It is a resourceful invitation which is soon revelling in an eager shuffle shaped by a great fusion between acoustic and electric guitar, which in turn is courted by the bubbling energy of the banjo. Vocally there is a reflective intimacy which equally shines thanks to the hazy voice of Hyslop and Gregson’s outstanding and varied vocal seducing.
Quick footed yet perfectly restrained to pull the listener physically and emotionally into its embrace, Bark and Sticks is only missing that final spark to turn impressed admiration into lustful enthusiasm. The track though shows that the potential is there and well within the band’s ability to grab even greater success over their incoming horizons.
Bark and Sticks is available digitally and on Ltd ED CD from September 29th @ http://www.kosoti.com/store/c1/Featured_Products.html
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