In the months that have passed since the recording of Beating Back…, the ranks of The Pica Beats have swelled into a full-fledged band, with the complex palate of the album’s crowded corners now tended to through the help of album contributor Adam McCollom on keyboards and bassist Garrett Kelly, along with an open-door cast of additional associates. As always, however, Ryan Barrett’s ever-refining vision remains at the fore: tracing time’s subtleties with a skillful hand, and blending them back together in an artfully kaleidoscopic mélange of sound. Beating Back the Claws of the Cold is the effortless result of this singular vision—an arrestingly understated collection of songs that is both timeless and entirely contemporary.
For all there is to be said about the power of the present in the endlessly cannibalizing tradition of pop music, it’s often the uncanny intangibility of timelessness that…
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