Bassh, a Belfast-born vocalist and multi-instrumentalist natively known as Jimmy Brown, has many a string to his musical bow. He has dedicated his time to providing vocals in Matrimony, a North Carolina-based country-folk fusion with his wife and her brothers.
Simultaneously, his own work as Bassh began as a collaborative effort alongside various musicians, producers and creatives. His empire developed throughout the release of three USA-only singles, with cult hit Body created alongside Grammy nominated producer and ex Band of Horses member Bill Reynolds. Second and third records, respectively titled Animal and Baby Blue, were formed from a working partnership with producer and ex-Cage The Elephant guitarist Lincoln Parish. Friends in high places indeed.
In his latest offering, Go To, Bassh has ditched bucolic folk hues and stepped up to the plate with a feast of indie pop. Not only does the song have unrivalled exclusivity in that it is his only track to be released in the UK, making it feel like a giant, encapsulating embrace – it is a step up from everything he has done previously.
The piece itself takes a while to decipher. Are the ethereal, 90s-esque vocals making it a pop tune? Do those groovy little guitar pangs mean it is an ode to funk? Before you have had a chance to decode any further, a larger than life, thriving chorus slaps you right in the face. It is brief, before narrowing back into another lax verse, but the melodious guitars set the creation alight in a similar way to a punky, catchy The 1975 offering.
As far as lyrics go, they are honest and relatable and not swallowed up by a ruckus of noise. In fact, they are the focal point of the single, which is probably a trademark of Lincoln Parish’s production. Bassh could have gone even further, inviting a raw, heavy guitar glue to hold it all together, but it seems there is plenty more up his masterful sleeve, so we can let him off.
Go To is a marriage of from-the-heart accolades, a tenacious pop bloodline and… bongos? Or some such bouncing percussion to nod your head to. Either way, it takes a while to understand, but you will be bopping and Basshing along in no time.
Words by Samantha Ewen