Throw away all existing expectations of what Courtney Barnett sounds like. She’s showing us something new.

An artist known for her profound lyricism and traditional songwriting prowess, Barnett has flipped the script for her latest album, End of The Day. A fully instrumental album comprising 17 seamless flowing tracks, which explore sound as a texture while playing with different tones.

As a soundtrack for the documentary Anonymous Club, a candid portrayal of Barnett’s ascent to international indie rock adulation, End of The Day is completely improvised. Experimenting with new gear alongside collaborator and producer Stella Mozgawa, the pair improvised music with guiding principles of, “nothing too maudlin, obvious, or instructive, nothing to tell the future audience how they should be feeling about Barnett’s life on screen.”

After a year of listening and loving what the pair had created, Barnett set about sorting through the assortment of instrumentals, finding missing pieces and tweaking each individually until 17 improvisational tracks were born- which are now named End of The Day.

Although this album is fleeting, it is an ethereal sound collage which reframes and reshapes the past to tell a story about who we have been and what we might become. When listening to this album, it should be kept in mind that it is a soundtrack yet also a rolling wave of continuous sound. As there is no start and really no end to each improvisation, and little distinguishing features between them it is an album that is hard to grasp. Yet when we throw away preconceptions about what music should and shouldn’t be we can admire the ambient nature of End of The Day.

Beautifully composed, this richly textured release from Barnett exhibits a further branch in her talent as a musician. With a departure from her signature witty and rambling lyrics, End of The Day is a successful leap into a more experimental sound.

Courtney Barnett: End of The Day – Out 8th September 2023 (Mom + Pop)

Barnett – Start Somewhere, Life Balance & First Slow – YouTube


Megan Barton

Meg is a proud Mancunian and Music Journalist. She started out by writing press releases for bands in her free time, but now runs her own website Dyrti which she plans to expand in the near future. She loves Lester Bangs and Tony Wilson and has interviewed bands such as Cabbage, Oceans On Mars and Adult Cinema. You will more often than not find her somewhere in the Northern Quarter.