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Joe Carnwath

New Album Out Now

RollingStone ★★★½

"Clever songwriter-pop....brimming with melodies, romanticism, clever arrangements and mildly cynical lyrics.

We are ready to be heartbroken!" - Max Gōsche

Ostsee-Zeitung ★★★★★

Westziet ★★★★

Joe Carnwath


Surprisingly, of the first people to catch the american born, english raised musician busking on the streets of London, it was not Bono (who did toss 300 pounds into the guitar case) but rather the owner of a small Swedish live-music club who would have the largest effect on Joe’s subsequent life and career.  Booked to play 2 nights at “Cafe Katalin” in Uppsala,  Joe instantly fell in love with the Swedish music scene and people (or to be more specific, the girl who’s apartment was directly above the club (What is it with those Scandinavian women??!). Immigration, marriage and blond children followed, as did musical collaborations with many architects of the “Swedish indie sound”.


For his solo debut album in 2019 “Big Heads Small Minds” , Joe teamed up with producer Johan Carlberg, with live drums coming curtesy of the internationally renowned  Brady Blade (Emmylou Harris/Steve Earle/Indigo Girls).

On the upcoming album, Joe has worked with Eric Bazilian (Joan Osborne/Robbie Williams/Cyndi Lauper) and Lasse Mårtén (Lykke Li/Franz Ferdinand/Chrissie Hynde)

Regardless of the Swedish and American collaborators, it is clearly British pop of the early ´80s that has left it’s mark on this collection of songs.


Despite the nods and reverence to the genre, the songwriting of Joe Carnwath is clearly fresh and of the present, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg: The man with the radiant blue eyes and smooth, concise baritone, has also proven to be an excellent, captivating live performer.  


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"Joe Carnwath has today released his new single titled ‘So So’. Part solid pop song, part mammoth size hook, ‘So So’ takes the laid back route to the perfect song with a memorable walk through the decades of rock coming out unscathed and freshly updated with an original track to carry the #indie scene forward. If magic was music, this would be the soundtrack." - Ryan Martin

RollingStone ★★★½


"Clever songwriter-pop by British-Swedish-American


Born in the US, raised in the UK, and now living in Sweden, Joe Carnwath's musical heritage is difficult to trace. First impression: The voice is reminiscent of Jens Lekman, but with a slightly darker timbre. Second impression: Someone has listened to a lot of Lloyd Cole. Third impression:  Someone has listened to a lot of Edwyn Collins. Forth impression: Someone has listened to a lot of The Smiths. Which gives you the main points of orientation. But Carnwath has too much fun with his songs to let his writing be stifled by reverence for his forbearers. Songs like "Just Because You're Sad" and "Your Mamma" are brimming with melodies, romanticism, clever arrangements and mildly cynical lyrics. We are ready to be heart broken!" - MAX GŌSCHE

Ostsee-zeitung ★★★★★

"Es passiert wohl nicht allzu oft, dass U2-Sanger Bono einem Straßenmusiker 300 britische Pfund zusteckt. Das

ist Joe Carnwath passiert, es war eine unverhoffte Begegnung, die den gebürtigen Amerikaner schliesslich zu diesem Album führte “Big Heads Small Minds" ist sehr melodiōs und klingt auch sehr britisch. Unweigerlich drangen sich Vergleiche mit Lloyd Cole oder den Smiths auf, hier ist der britische Achtziger-Jahre—Pop sehr präsent. Aber Joe Carnwath, der in Großbritannien aufwuchs und heute in Schweden lebt, kann sich mit seinen Songs profilieren. Lieder wie “Boys Will Be Boys“ oder “For Your Pleasure" schüttelt Joe Carnwath einfach so aus dem Ärmel, sein lockeres Pop-Album bleibt trotzdem nicht in der Retro-Schleife hängen. Aber: Joe Carnwath klingt wirklich verdammt nach Lloyd Cole."


Westzeit ★★★★

“Der in Amerika geborene in Cambridge und Oxford aufgewachsene Joe Carnwath, der unter anderem mit dem Trio Peter Bjorn And John zusammen arbeitete, präsentiert sich auf dem aktuellen Album ’Big Head Small Minds’ als exzellenter Songwriter mit gänzlich 80er Jahre-BritPop-Spirit. Natürlich steht hier die Atmosphäre über allem, der Song ist König. Da ist kein Platz für Selbstverliebtheit. Beinahe behutsam nehmen die Instrumente ihr Spiel auf, steigern den Song unmerklich, laden die Spannung, gipfeln in einer sanften Wall—Of-Sound. Joe Carnwath und seine schwedischen Mitstreiter gelingt mit den zehn Songs auf dem Album ein großartiger Streich. Hier wird fortgeführt,

was Lloyd Cole, Edwyn Collins, Housemartains und

Morrissey zum Erfolg führte: das Songwriting.

’Big Head Small Minds’ von Joe Carnwath ist musikalisches Understatement in Person!” - GEORG LUMMEN

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