After a banner year, including the release of her critically and popularly acclaimed second LP Hello, I’m Doing My Best (triple j’s Feature Album) a record which Pitchfork heralded as “An emotionally nuanced album that never takes itself too seriously” and her debut European and US dates Ali Barter is going back out on the road during Summer 2020 for a run of regional dates on the East Coast of Australia.
Hitting Ballarat, Kyneton, Euroa, Cronulla, Newcastle, Wollongong, and peppering in a couple of Melbourne and Sydney shows, Ali will kick off the decade swapping New Year’s resolutions for riffs. Her Australian dates precede her North American tour, seeing her play six shows in March, including New Colossus Festival before wrapping up her US sojourn with a showcase at SxSW. Full list of Australian and North American tour dates below
Hello, I’m Doing My Best follows Barter’s 2017 debut LP A Suitable Girl. A record that, by all accounts was critically and popularly acclaimed. Tone Deaf touted it as “an album that struck a nerve with Australia”, while Sydney Morning Herald backed her as a "star on the rise". Ali Barter, however, wasn't so sure. “The first record came out and for some reason I rejected it,” she says, listing the complaints she found with her own work: “it’s too polished and my voice is too high” being at the top of the list. Overcome with self-doubt, Barter pushed herself away from music, determined to never write another song.
But in the winter, a few months after the record's release, she went out of town to clear her head, with her guitar for company. "Stuff started coming up and I couldn't push it down," she says, and despite feeling like she "wasn't ready" for what these songs were saying, her and Dawson went about recording and testing the limits of her surprising new songs. She heard something in them she'd realised she didn't need to fight anymore. "When we demoed them up, I was like, Oh, there I am. The thing I was pushing against was me"
Hello I’m Doing My Best is a sentiment most can relate to, and therein lies the undeniable pull of Ali Barter’s output. From her breakout single ‘Girlie Bits’ to recent cut ‘Ur A Piece Of Shit’ Barter spins sobering honesty through sugary pop songs, like a one-two punch of staunch self assurance and touching vulnerability, in a way that is so uniquely her own. On her method, Barter explains “I really connect to the idea that you can say something really controversial, but if you say it in a nice way people are more likely to listen to it.”
Since winning the triple j Unearthed competition and releasing her debut album A Suitable Girl in 2017, the former choir girl has enjoyed support at home from triple j, FBi Radio, The Australian, Rolling Stone and Tone Deaf, while further afield, Beats 1, Clash and The 405 have all thrown support behind the unconventional pop star.
Barter has toured relentlessly, completing two sold out headline tours, countless festival slots and supported The Rubens, The War On Drugs, The Jezabels, Stevie Nicks, The Preatures, Chrissie Hynde and personal hero, Liz Phair.