Forming just two years ago, the Brooklyn-based five-piece Barrie is a heartbeat away from a major breakthrough.

After a promising EP in 2018, which contained the singles ‘Michigan’, ‘Tal Uno’ and ‘Canyons’, the Barrie Lindsay-fronted quintet has introduced the world to their debut LP, Happy To Be Here. It’s an album that brings a certain kind of energy generally discovered only in one’s own personal reveries. While Lindsay plays guitar, piano, synth, and bass, this is very much a full band, comprising of Dominic Apa (drums), Spurge Carter (synth and vocals), Sabine Holler (bass and backing vocals) and Noah Prebish (synth and guitar). Individually, the members are from different parts of the world, but the collective came together to form a tight musicianship easily heard on their stunning debut record.

Happy To Be Here is cocooned in the realm of dreamy rock, fuzzy arrangements, and twilight-pop (I’m calling it that because it’s the perfect soundtrack for a night drive to anywhere and everywhere). Opener ‘Darjeeling’ is an exceptionally well-crafted sonic gem, emitting the vibes of ‘80 pop with a modern flair. Sonically lush with saccharine harmonies, Barrie breathes new life in what it means to be making indie-pop music today. ‘Dark Tropical’ kicks off with the piano before the tides change with dreamy synths and laidback arrangements to guide listeners on a journey to a chilled out destination.

‘Clovers’ will make you swoon, with Barrie demonstrating the complexities of indie-pop rarely shown these days. ‘Habits’ is ambient dream-pop for those lost and soon to be found; it’s the place to seek solace, away from the narrow hallways you must past through in life. ‘Saturated’ leans more on pop than indie, but regardless, the results are striking. Lindsay’s vocals shine brightly with deepness found in every line she delivers. The main lyric here is “I'm saturated with you,” and once you hear it, it’ll immediately melt your heart.

‘Chinatown’ is a bouncy yet subtle synth-pop gem, floating toward the locale of euphoria, Barrie provides warm tones and shimmery pop to bask within. ‘Teenager’ feels a bit freer here with arrangements loosely constructed. Like its title, ‘Teenager’ is sporadic and all over the place, but Barrie’s laidback tempos allow one to still find something to grasp onto. It’s definitely a lighter tune compared to the dense work found elsewhere on the album. The segues into ‘Geology’, the best track off the album. This airy, ethereal tune is pure vibrant pop, the vocals are breathtaking and float effortlessly right above the groovy tempo, rhythmically it’s the band’s most intricate offering, with smooth guitar textures and shape-shifting synths. It’s hands down a front-runner for best track of 2019.

The lush record wraps up with ‘Casino Run’ and ‘Hutch’. The penultimate track is smooth as butter, touching upon very lite-R&B undercurrents; it’s a woozy-pop endeavor once again showing the many layers this band has to offer in a bold yet focused debut record. The final track ‘Hatch’ is a picturesque effort, one that is feel-good pop with sophisticated productions and divine vocals – it’s exquisite dream-pop with heavy emphasis on dream.

Happy To Be Here is an album to leave the hectic, chaotic times we live in somewhere else for a day or two. It allows listeners to open their minds and hearts while pulling them closer into themselves. The record serves as daydream, removing listeners from trouble and worries. In the end, Barrie’s Happy To Be Here is heavenly pop for you, me, and just about everyone.