barbarossa-the-load-520

“He’s going to Memphis, Memphis… Memphis Industries”

The new album from James Mathe aka Barbarossa moved that little bit closer with the announcement on Valentines Day that he’d signed to Memphis Industries.

The label say its due “later in 2013” and celebrated by releasing a new version of perennial Mathe favourite “The Load” as a free download. Simply head here and in return for a crisp email address they’ll hand over an audio treat.

I will not ever take this for granted, I am forever in your hands

Lauren Laverne gave “The Load” an airing this week, and when the US version of Sherlock featured another album track “Bloodlines“, an old 2011 live session for Music Like Dirt quickly racked up 25,000 plays on Youtube!!

At the risk of being the party pooper I actually prefer the homespun charm of the original demo (which you can still hear on the audio graveyard that is Myspace). I think you always hold the first version you hear of a song dear, and the same goes for demo’s by The Arctic Monkeys, Adele and Le Sac & Pip.
Nevertheless like most Mathe songs “The Load” is a strong enough tune to shine whatever the production whether it’s the wheezing budget keyboards of the demo or the glossy organs of the almost equally fine finished article.

In fact a live version of “The Load” recorded on a London rooftop without the use of a wind muff was one of my Top 20 tunes of 2010.


Mathe has also teamed up with dance producers Mario & Vidis who remixed his Bon Iver cover “Re:Stacks” and have given Prince’s classic “When Doves Cry” a radical refit.

James Mathe – Twitter / Facebook / Soundcloud