Lawton specialises in well-crafted intelligent pop tunes with the emphasis on melody and lyrical punch. If you're looking for mystical sojourns into introspection, then you've sadly come to the wrong place.
2001's 'Enough to Go Around' was recorded between December 2000 and March 2001. Largely recorded with an acoustic feel, the album included Lawton favourites such as the spellbinding 'Grow Together' the classic pop of 'Prettiest Face' and the moving 'Beautiful'. The album was recorded with only a small nucleus of players, which featured Barry Lawton on guitar and vocals, Norman Barratt on bass, additional guitar's, drums, and in between all of this the production and mastering of the album. Keyboards were played by the seriously talented Chris Gaskill, and to keep the family vibe alive, the album was engineered by Norman's son John Barratt. The album was received well when stripped back and performed solo and acoustic live. In the creator's opinion, the songs shine and take on a life of their own away from the studio.
This album was followed up in 2003 by Barry's latest offering 'Brown Lipstick' recorded again between December 2002 and March 2003. The album retains the same core unit of players, but has a much more rounded and fuller sound. 'Lipstick' incorporates a variety of styles and themes, ranging from the Motown influenced 'Climbers' classic pop of 'Paths Unlaid' to the bluesy rock feel of 'The Night She Bit The Bullet'. Subject matter covers love both lost and found, the onset of age, and choice social and economic commentary on the likes of 'Jobs for Life' The potential of Lawton's voice shown on the first album, is embellished further on tracks such as the closer 'From Here to the Past' stripped bare with just piano and vocal. It is worth noting that some of the finest moments on the album, feature the exquisite Piano/ Hammond Organ playing of Chris Gaskill, which add that extra dynamic to the strength of the songs on the album.
Lawton has played live anywhere that will take or appreciate him. The main source of live work in the North comes from within the Acoustica umbrella. Acoustica is a platform for singer-songwriters in the North West show-casing their material for a live audience. This has been where he has been able to hone his distinctive performing style.
Through the confidence gained and positive response to Acoustica, Barry has gone on to play The Cavern in Liverpool, The Kashmir Klub in London, The Greys Pub in Brighton, and Wolverhampton University and at the Barfly acoustic gigs at The Enterprise in Camden.
2003 also saw Barry contribute tracks to compilation albums of unsigned artists. From 'Enough To go Around' he contributed 'Beautiful' for the Up North part 1 album released by Chromium Records. Also Matchbox Recordings featured another track from 'Enough to go Around' on their Resonance album entitled 'Five Minute World'.
Barry is currently writing new material and has 'Grow Together' released by Matchbox Recordings on the 26th April 2004, as part of their 'Elevation' album.
For further info visit www.matchboxrecordings.co.uk look at compliation reviews for albums 'Resonance' and 'Elevation'
The review below was taken from the 2005 spring edition of the (UK) musicians union magazine and is their take on 'Brown Lipstick'
No holds are barred for Barry who flies in the face of the usual tenderness of acoustic acts and hits home initially like a modern day Hugh Cornwell in the late 70's Stranglers.
There are very moving musical touches at work here however, such as the melodic guitar solo opener on 'Alone'.
Additional listening brings out other depths too for example; the piano and plaintive vocal in the excellent ballad 'Swings & Roundabouts'. Definitely one to watch.
3. Any Town
4. Paths Unlaid
5. Swings & Roundabouts
6. Slip Of A Girl
7. The Night She Bit The Bullet
8. Baby Steps
9. Tears & Affection
11. Jobs For Life
12. From Here To The Past
The Railway Children
POP: British Pop
SOLO MALE ARTIST