Published Aug 12, 2014Over the course of three albums, Bahamas (a.k.a. Afie Jurvanen) has established a sound of his own that props his sharp and distinct guitar savvy up against soft pop rhythms and tempos. It's a sonic space that the Toronto artist has carefully carved out and inhabited, but Jurvanen admits that he has yet to achieve the one type of sound that he hopes to master one day.
"Every record I've made I've tried to make a folk record," he tells Exclaim! "I love folk music, I think it's not contrived and I think it's not aspiring to be anything other than great storytelling."
In that sense, Bahamas actually achieves his definition of folk music. He would later backtrack and admit that his music is a form of "modern folk."
"Modern folk has, out of necessity, grown to include all these different things," he continues. "If I got up there with suspenders and a banjo, that would be contrived. That would be a costume. I don't mean to slight anyone, but that's just not for me. I just try to do what comes naturally to me."
And what comes naturally to Jurvanen — especially on his quasi self-titled third album Bahamas Is Afie, (out August 19 on Brushfire/Universal) — is a free-flowing stream of consciousness that rides riffs so effortlessly that it stands as some of his best work yet.
One of many reasons why Jurvanen agrees that this is a different and evolved Bahamas record is due to the amount of time he allowed himself to record, an entire summer as opposed to his previous one-week effort on 2012's Barchords. He adds, "If I gave myself a deadline and said I had to get it done in a week, I think it would've sounded quite different.
"It just feels like something that has a lot of effort and time put into it and at the same time it feels much more to the point. I think I've left a lot of musical things to chance in the past and this was a little more thought out. It took all that time to realize all those ideas."
You can find details about Bahamas' fall tour here, plus head over here to listen to all of Bahamas Is Afie on Exclaim.ca.
Read more from our recent interview with Jurvanen here.