American-born singer/songwriter based in Manchester releases a thought-provoking and stirring track, Sticky Shadows, the first single from their anticipated album The Meadow.
“open and vulnerable… [Bay] fosters a strong sense of community between performer and audience.”
Bay Bryan’s new single Sticky Shadows, is a rhythmically charged Americana/indie-folk song featuring an intricate and unique sound that feels similar to artists like Nick Drake, Anaïs Mitchell and Mumford & Sons. Bay’s vocals are reminiscent of Laura Marling carrying with them strong lyrical content that beautifully conveys a personal inner-struggle as well as a yearning to somehow transcend that struggle. The instrumentation is intriguing and fresh with a stand-out bass clarinet part played characterfully by Fraser Langton of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra. The sonics of the song remain mainly acoustic with the exception of a few well-placed and haunting synth textures.
“Everything I say will be meaningful or meaningless, depending on the day, depending on whether I can let go of my sticky shadows…”
Although the lyrics-alone might suggest otherwise, Sticky Shadows has an almost optimistic quality to it as it drives confidently forward. The snare drum with it’s militant march has an air of naiveté when set against the whimsical nature of Bay’s often child-like musings. The lyric that finishes the song is the same one that starts us off, as if we are back at square one. We are left feeling like there might be more to the story.
Alongside Bay on acoustic guitar, piano and vocals, Sticky Shadows showcases some of Manchester’s top musicians: Fraser Langton (bass clarinet / further arrangement), Pete Mitchell (percussion), Sam Vicary (upright bass), and Mat Peters (Synth textures). Recorded at Airtight Studios in Chorlton by sound engineer Seadna McPhail; Mastered by Zach Kornhauser.
The Meadow, set to be released at the end of September (2021), is Bay’s debut studio album. It consists of 11 tracks (7 songs and 4 interludes) and conceptually takes place in a self-created fantasy space (the meadow), designed to keep one safe, idle and in a day dream. However, underneath the “golden” rays of comfort lies a discordant feeling: that we no longer belong in this meadow anymore. The songs and interludes weave together a narrative-of-sorts, exploring an ongoing push-and-pull —to stay or to leave. By the end of the album we finally take those much needed steps Beyond The Meadow, marking an end to a chapter and the beginning of a new adventure, one that is “blue…” The album is emotive & filmic, and delivers an opportunity for catharsis.
About Bay Bryan
Bay Bryan, is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Manchester (UK), originally from the Rocky Mountains of Colorado (USA). Besides The Meadow album project, Bay’s drag alter-ego Queen Bayard recently released a fun-and-fabulous single called I Wanna Know You (January 2021); Bay also co-composed the songs for The Not So Ugly Sisters, a family musical which recently had a run at Leeds Playhouse (June 2021); he/they also scored the music to the short film “Egg Party” which won the audience choice award at Cinequest Film Festival (2021).