Single Review – Courtney Barnett – City Looks Pretty

Melbourne singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett made a name for herself with her debut album Sometimes I Sit and Think and Sometimes I Just Sit from 2015. It received deserved acclaim for injecting new life into more traditional guitar music and a lot of that was to do with her dazed, down to earth delivery as opposed to being something it couldn’t. Her new album Tell Me How You Really Feel is due on May 18th and will most likely see Courtney reinforce her approach for now. Her latest single ‘City Looks Pretty’ certainly indicates such an approach with jangling riffs met with distorted lead elements. The lyrics still invoke a detailed personal narrative, but along with the arrangement, they seem smoother in their progressions and transitions making for an all round slicker song. This is shown well when the song fades into and out of a subtle organ based interlude towards its conclusion. It seems hard to see her making a more impactful album than her debut, but if anything Courtney will show that she already sounds like a well established artist.

Owen Riddle