Album Review: The Story So Far by Den Baron (2019) (Shiny Happy Records)

In the late 90’s I spent a summer in company of the beautiful German countryside, their equally beautiful beer and the great unwashed who frequented several Bavarian music festivals. It was here that I initially happened upon the brilliant sound of German artist Den Baron.

Thankfully not much has changed in his aesthetic in the last 20 years and he remains the sort of act that such festivals are made for…or at least what makes you remember them fondly.

Initially, such an allure can be found in tracks such as I Just Walked The Wrong Way, Dito and the superlative Linus (see below). These have that overtly luscious pop bounce that an act like Mike Adams at His Honest Weight flourishes within, with added 60’s references points that you know are there, but cannot quite delineate exactly due to the constant twee delivery.

However, it would be something of a disservice to this great artist if we were to dismiss his style as purely cavorting within a maelstrom of twee/contempo pop. For within tracks such as The Girl at the Door, Wildwater and The Light (see below) he slides the slightly tinny, wispy riffs of a twee act like Blueboy around a vocal delivery that suggests the rounded intonations of Allen Clapp’s solo efforts. It’s all a sound that we have heard many times before in mid 90’s Anglophile indie-pop, but it has his own definitive sense of exuberance and playfulness.

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Den Baron has been around well over 20 years now, without ever really getting the critical acclaim in blog world he deserves it…if the world has any justice, this album should change that.

Artist Links:  Bandcamp  Discogs

Label Links:  shinyhappyrecords.weebly.comSoundCloud  Facebook

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