Download Suede’s ‘Pulsating, Romantic’ Return to Form: ‘Barriers’

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Britpop progenitors Suede will return in March with Bloodsports, their first new album in more than 10 years, and to mark the occasion, the London five-piece have offered fans a free download of “Barriers,” a song off the upcoming LP. The nearly four-minute track towers with an arena-ready, heart-swelling chorus, lined by a brittle but piercing guitar melody, and overflows with melodramatic lyrics depicting lipstick traces, a world wrapped in tinsel, and invitations and fountain pens. 

Despite being the first taste of Suede’s sixth record, “Barriers” won’t be the first official single from Bloodsports, according to frontman Brett Anderson. “After a year of sweating and bleeding over the record it’s finally finished so we wanted to get some music out there as soon as we could,” Anderson told the NME. “‘Barriers’ isn’t the first single but we are proud enough of it to just chuck it out there and thought that its pulsing, romantic swell somehow summed up the feel of the album quite nicely.” The first single from the 10-track collection will be “It Starts and Ends With You,” scheduled for February. 

Anderson went on to describe the follow-up to Suede’s 2002 LP, A New Morning, saying, “It’s about lust, it’s about the chase, it’s about the endless carnal game of love. It was possibly the hardest we ever made but certainly is the most satisfying. It’s ten furious song[s] [that] have reclaimed for me what Suede was always about: drama, melody and noise.”

In a September interview with The Quietus, Anderson said, “Without wishing to be facetious, it sounds like Suede.” He added, “We’re not trying to reinvent the sound of the band, that’d be a disastrous thing to do. I think that’s possibly where we went wrong on the last two albums,” referring to the mixed reception to A New Morning and its 1999 predecessor, Head Music. The English singer said that the group’s first album since reuniting in 2010 resembles parts of 1994’s Dog Man Star and 1996’s Coming Up. Judge for yourself by streaming “Barriers” below (via Consequence of Sound) or downloading it for free through Suede’s website.


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