Barbara Panther?

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I first heard Barbara Panther on Burnt Friedman's [i]First Night Forever[/b], it features they're collab "Machine in the Ghost", which in my opinion is one of the finest trip hop/dub songs of this decade. I think she has a wonderful vocal style and voice (it's kinda Björkish, but not derivative). I've looked for information about her, but it's kinda hard to find. There's a couple of videos of her from 2007 on Youtube, which I think are solo tunes by her:

I think both of these are very nice, so combined with "Machine in the Ghost", I'd be interested to hear more of her, but apparently there isn't anything more. says she "is currently working on her first record", but I can find any info on it on her Myspace page. Does anyone here know more about this mysterious singer, and whether she actually has a solo record coming out?

Tuomas, Wednesday, 9 December 2009 18:14 (ten years ago) link

ok, the first song is awesome. i'm intrigued

Karen Tregaskin, Wednesday, 9 December 2009 18:23 (ten years ago) link

If you like it, you should check out "Machine in the Ghost", I think it's even better:

Tuomas, Wednesday, 9 December 2009 18:41 (ten years ago) link

Whoops, sorry, you can only listen to a snippet of the tune via that link. Well, it shouldn't be to hard to find the full song on Soulseek, for example.

Tuomas, Wednesday, 9 December 2009 18:46 (ten years ago) link

She has signed with City Slang. She is currently making turning her demos into her first record and there is even a demo song hidden away on the CS website:

celling, Thursday, 10 December 2009 22:41 (ten years ago) link

hm... what was I thinking? making turning, right....sorry

celling, Thursday, 10 December 2009 22:42 (ten years ago) link

Thanks for the link! The heavy reverb in that tune is kinda distracting, but otherwise it sounds nice.

Tuomas, Thursday, 10 December 2009 22:45 (ten years ago) link

sounds promising. i will definitely give this a listen

Karen Tregaskin, Friday, 11 December 2009 10:14 (ten years ago) link

i see what you mean about the reverb, but i don't really mind that. seems more about poor demo quality than aesthetic decision. this is completely up my particular alley

Karen Tregaskin, Friday, 11 December 2009 10:29 (ten years ago) link

I can't find any more info on the City Slang site, though. Celling, where'd you find out about her signing and upcoming record?

Tuomas, Friday, 11 December 2009 11:22 (ten years ago) link

two months pass...

Okay, apparently Barbara Panther's album is supposed to come out this spring, and it will feature collaboration(s) with Matthew Herbert, at least according to his site... I guess that's cool? Hopefully it'll have some stuff with Burnt Friedman too. She's having a gig here in Helsinki on April 1st, I'll report back if I go there.

Oh yeah, and "Snake" by Acid Washed with her on vocals is totally hot and steamy, and not Björkish at all:

Tuomas, Thursday, 4 March 2010 19:36 (nine years ago) link

eleven months pass...

Looks the BP album is finally coming out this April, a year later than it was supposed to:

Empire, the EP she released last autumn was quite good, so I have high expectations for the album...

IMO "Empire" is not the best of her new tunes, but a good song and an amazing video anyway.

Tuomas, Friday, 4 February 2011 08:38 (nine years ago) link

I would've kinda expected more enthusiasm for Barbara Panther... It seems her kind of music is right up the ILM alley, but maybe she's too unknown in here?

Tuomas, Friday, 4 February 2011 11:00 (nine years ago) link

three months pass...

The album finally came out this week, and there's a new video for "Moonlightpeople":

IMO this one is clearly a better song that "Empire", quite poppy compared to her previous output.

I still haven't received my copy of the album, but I can't wait for it to drop to my letterbox.

Tuomas, Thursday, 26 May 2011 10:52 (eight years ago) link

That is a good song, like it a lot. This album is on Spotify so I'll certainly give it a spin.

ILM is fickle, sometimes it really takes a "controversial" review on Pitchfork or one of its own resident popstars or reviewerstars to rep for something before anyone pays it any attention. (Even if it's just the attention of ornery gits coming in to grumble "I don't understand why this is getting so much attention!")

Karen D. Tregaskin, Thursday, 26 May 2011 11:38 (eight years ago) link

Your obligatory "she's a bit quirky, this one" Guarniad article:

In which she uses the term "modern electronic baroque music" which is a thing that there should really be a rolling thread for maybe.

Karen D. Tregaskin, Thursday, 26 May 2011 15:32 (eight years ago) link

In fairness, that's better than "she's a bit quirky this one" articles usually are, and in fairness she gives the writer a lot to work with. Definitely interested in hearing this one.

Matt DC, Thursday, 26 May 2011 15:39 (eight years ago) link

Sorry, I feel bad for translating my enthusiasm into "jaded ILX speak."

I thought she seemed very well spoken and interesting in the interview, like she gave the interviewer a lot more than he could cram into his wordcount.

I've listened to this about three times in a row and it is both bewildering and dizzying but does manage that trick of pulling you into this intriguing world she sets up. There's a lot of lovely cooing beds of closely enmeshed vocals and chants over the beats-and-bass that you don't really hear the first time because the lead vocals are so engaging.

Karen D. Tregaskin, Thursday, 26 May 2011 15:45 (eight years ago) link

I finally got my copy of the album, and after a few spins I'm mostly loving it! There's a couple of tracks that don't sound particularly brilliant, but most of the album is quite immersive and hypnotic. I love how both the vocals and beats are constantly on the verge of breaking into more avant spheres, but they always fall back into the pop mold. Like Kate said, there are lots of things going on beyond the surface "song" level, so it feels like repeat listens will be rewarded with this album. But at the moment I'm loving the energy and immediacy of "Unchained" the most.

My only disappointment is that Panther didn't collaborate with Burnt Friedman here, as I'd hoped. I can see how producing the whole album with Herbert makes it more cohesive, but I would've loved to hear more stuff like "Machine in the Ghost". Maybe on the next Friedman album?

Tuomas, Monday, 30 May 2011 19:48 (eight years ago) link

This album still sounds pretty hot, repeated listenings haven't reduced its power. Pretty much the only thing I don't like about it is that the songs are so short (almost all of them are 3 or 4 minutes), would've liked to hear some more of electronic tweakery like the cut-up vocals in the beginning of the first song. Maybe there'll be some remixes later on though?

Tuomas, Monday, 13 June 2011 09:10 (eight years ago) link

three weeks pass...

This is pretty good, and I don't usually like Herbert productions.

Matt DC, Tuesday, 5 July 2011 11:42 (eight years ago) link

I'm not super familiar with Herbert, but to me this feels like a "proper" solo album, in that even though there are various bits and pieces that sound clearly like Herbert (the cut-up vocals in the first tune, for example), you always feel it's Panther who's running the show, from the beginning to the end.

Tuomas, Wednesday, 6 July 2011 06:51 (eight years ago) link

This is a fine, fine album. Played Rise Up when DJing before an Oxbow show recently and two people came up and asked who it was (this usually never happens).

YOUTUBE ...the people over there tell the truth. (stevie), Wednesday, 6 July 2011 08:57 (eight years ago) link

Is she the same person as 'Mistress Barbara' who appears on this track? Sounds very similar.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 6 July 2011 09:04 (eight years ago) link

She did make a point in interviews of stating that the whole album was already completely written before Herbert got involved. So I suspect his role as "producer" was more like the rockist definition of "guy who puts the finishing production touches on everything" rather than the usual dance sense of "guy who does all the music start to finish and whacks a singer on top."

Karen D. Tregaskin, Wednesday, 6 July 2011 09:29 (eight years ago) link

Probably, yeah. The album sleeve credits her and Herbert as co-producers on every track.

Tuomas, Wednesday, 6 July 2011 09:50 (eight years ago) link

It's not his contribution I'm questioning really but I don't generally like his whole sound. Also, annoying and gimmicky. But it certainly feels like 'her' album in the way that a Bjork album does regardless of whether she's working with Mark Bell or Matmos or whoever.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 6 July 2011 10:01 (eight years ago) link

six months pass...

Discovered "Moonlightpeople" from people repping for it on the EOY campaigning thread - gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous. Wouldn't have guessed Herbert was involved from the production, heh.

etc, Thursday, 12 January 2012 20:34 (eight years ago) link

So sad I wasn't in this thread from the beginning.

Johnny Fever, Thursday, 12 January 2012 20:36 (eight years ago) link

Ha, I actually nommed "Moonlightpeople" in the 2010 ILM end-of-year poll too (it was on BP's digital EP that came out in autumn 2010), but maybe this year it'll finally get its due? Though IMO "Dizzy" from the album is even better.

Tuomas, Thursday, 12 January 2012 21:31 (eight years ago) link

Eh, sorry, I meant "Unchained", which is clearly the best tune she's ever done. Though "Dizzy" is very pretty too.

Tuomas, Thursday, 12 January 2012 21:35 (eight years ago) link

Glad this thread got revived. This is one of those records I heard last year and thought, "this is going to be a big deal." And then it wasn't.

Evan R, Thursday, 12 January 2012 21:36 (eight years ago) link

Yeah, I was kinda expecting the album get a lot more critical acclaim than it did. You'd think BP's combination of fierce artsiness and underlying popist sensibility would be like manna for the critics?

Tuomas, Thursday, 12 January 2012 21:40 (eight years ago) link

It was manna for me. Between hearing it and making my ballot (just a matter of weeks), it became my #2.

Johnny Fever, Thursday, 12 January 2012 21:59 (eight years ago) link

Huh, she did a cover of the Talking Heads' "Once In A Lifetime" w/Kid606 in 2010 (link).

etc, Friday, 13 January 2012 12:12 (eight years ago) link

really enjoying this, my favorite of the eoy-nomination new discoveries.

fighting growlbacks bottomless spirit pit (reddening), Monday, 16 January 2012 05:12 (eight years ago) link

Tuomas, you did a great of repping for her job getting your nominations in so quick. As soon as I heard the two songs you nominated I ordered the album. I've played it loads over the last few weeks and ending up putting it in my top ten.

Along with the tracks that have been mentioned, Last Dance is one of my favourites.

Kitchen Person, Monday, 16 January 2012 10:08 (eight years ago) link

This album remains awesome, I'm glad that she's finally seeing some ILX appreciation. (I've kind of listened to it so much this year that I'm a bit burned out on it, but it's definitely AOTY territory for me.)

Drexciya's Midnight Runners (Wheal Dream), Monday, 16 January 2012 10:41 (eight years ago) link

four years pass...

Where did Barbara Panther go? Her fb page was most recently updated just last month, but it seems all she's been doing lately is dj gigs. ;_;

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Saturday, 6 February 2016 06:07 (four years ago) link

I played this again last month, wonderful record

Brian of Morbius (stevie), Saturday, 6 February 2016 12:14 (four years ago) link

three months pass...

Finally some new music! Quite a nice tune, though maybe kinda tweer than what'd you'd expect from her?

Tuomas, Friday, 13 May 2016 10:58 (three years ago) link


Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Friday, 13 May 2016 12:29 (three years ago) link

nine months pass...

It's what it says it is.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Thursday, 16 February 2017 00:43 (three years ago) link

one year passes...

New tune, this sounds pretty awesome! The lyrics are quite something, dunno if I fully agree with this Earth Mother stuff, but I love how unabashedly idealistic she is.

Tuomas, Saturday, 27 October 2018 12:50 (one year ago) link

And how her singing style on this tune reflects that.

It'd be nice to get a proper record from her again, not just a tune on Soundcloud once a year or so.

Tuomas, Saturday, 27 October 2018 12:52 (one year ago) link

ten months pass...

It'd be nice to get a proper record from her again, not just a tune on Soundcloud once a year or so.


technopolis, Tuesday, 27 August 2019 18:58 (five months ago) link

Full album out now.

Johnny Fever, Friday, 6 September 2019 01:05 (five months ago) link

Oh whoops, I guess that's what the link directly above was to.

Johnny Fever, Friday, 6 September 2019 01:06 (five months ago) link

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