Frenetic, electrifying, and viciously creative, Barns Courtney possesses an unbridled passion that’s increasingly rare in the modern music landscape. Born in the UK and raised in Seattle, the now LA-based singer-songwriter’s most recent album, 404, was a top 25 at Alt Radio and top 40 at AAA. Its lead single “99” went Gold reaching the top 5. The album was informed by his far-ranging obsessions that include the writings of Oscar Wilde, ritualistic iconography and ancient mythology, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, to name a few), all crystallized in an elaborate narrative centered around a post-apocalyptic cult leader. Previous to its release Barns had already received critical acclaim with multiple Gold singles in the US and UK including “Glitter and Gold” and “Fire.” Performances on Conan, The Late Late Show with James Corden and video game syncs including Apex Legends, FIFA 17 and more, have all helped propel Barns to the forefront of the rock world.
For Courtney—a near-lifelong musician who started writing songs at age six and later spent time living in his car as he struggled to kickstart his career—the push for transformation and transcendence lies at the heart of all his work. “Music first came to me in the darkest depths of my life, as a way to find catharsis and exorcize my demons,” he says. “The main thing it offers me now, especially with the live show, is the ability to connect with other humans in a way that’s completely unbound by societal norms. If you do it right, you can lift people up, you can help them to release their inhibitions, you can make them feel like they’ve been transported to a whole different world. The chance to do that for other people will always be the real pull for me.”