Friday, 26 March 2010

Broken Bells - Broken Bells

Combine James Mercer from The Shins and Dangermouse what do you get? The answer is Broken Bells.

The album starts with “The High Road” where there is a feeling of The Shins with it’s laid back and chilled rhythm. Obviously with James Mercer singing it will still sound like The Shins but this song sounds like it could have been from anyone of his previous albums. It has a splendid feel to it, something for a lazy summer afternoon. Dangermouse’s influence can be heard with the electronic sounds popping up in the background and the whole thing works beautifully.

The same could be said with “Vaporize” where once again this song sounds as if it could be from one of The Shins albums. Another song that just works again though as the instruments mix together to create another joyful song

The real stand out song from this album is “The Ghost inside” where there is a much more upbeat feel and a Michael Jackson –esc high pitch voice. This song wouldn’t go a miss at a party to bring people together in a swaying dance. There is definitely more input to this song from Dangermouse but when combined with James’ voice it works well and creates a catchy song.

Fans of The Shins should be very happy with this album as they still have James’ voice to listen to and it would seem that he gets a lot of say into each song. However they may need a bit of time to adjust to the “newer” electric sounds. Especially with “Mongreal Heart”, the music from this song sounds like something you would here in an 80’s film soundtrack – a good one at that!

Overall this is another great album from James Mercer with help from Dangermouse it creates a new but well worked sound.

I am a big fan of The Shins and this album does enough to keep me interested especially as James does the vocals. Some songs do have a new edge to them but for me it all works and is an album I have found myself “biggin’ up” to my friends.

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