The project of visual artist, producer and composer Matthew Barnes, Forest Swords first emerged in 2010 with debut EP Dagger Paths – a heady fusion of of sample strewn claustrophobia, sweating dub, and weighty soundscapes.
The gauzy deconstruction of electronic music saw the EP named FACT Magazine's #1 album of the year, and in 2013 Barnes articulated and streamlined his sound world even more on the critically acclaimed album Engravings (released via the Tri Angle label), which forged hip hop shuffles and guitar-smeared washes of sound with ecstatic snatches of voice and drone.
In his work, Barnes explores the intersections between euphoria and melancholy, human materiality and modern technology, spirituality and physicality, weaving threads between them all to create music that's somehow both familiar and alien, ancient and modern. He has distilled his recorded output into striking audio-visual live sets that has seen him perform at the likes of Sonar, CTM and Unsound festivals and with the likes of Mogwai, Portishead and Ben Frost, as well as collaborating with dub legend Lee 'Scratch' Perry. Barnes has recently scored music for the Assassin's Creed video game series.