Have you ever seen the film Garden State? No? Well do. It’s a brilliant film starring Zach Braff (from The Scrubs) and Natalie Portman (from lots of things). I know this isn’t a film review blog but to bring this back to being relevant, the sound track of the film is awesome too. There are many, many brilliant tracks on there but two that stand out are “New Slang” and “Caring Is Creepy” by a band called “The Shins”. They are also well worth looking up – in fact, I will write a review of the 3 albums I have of theirs later.

The reason I’m bringing this all up is I have stumbled across a group called “Broken Bells”, which just so happen to be made up of the lead singer/guitarist of The Shins (James Mercer) and artist-producer Danger Mouse a.k.a. Brian Burton, and as I’ve bought it, I thought I’d share it with you. 🙂

Broken Bells by Broken Bells

Broken Bells by Broken Bells

So the pair have teamed up to bring together this album and what you have is The Shins sound but with a little less dreamy and a bit more wheely.

I love The Shins but the only slight problem is their albums do seem to go off into a strange soft world and they lose their momentum a little bit. That’s fine if you’re day dreaming or you have the music on as the background sound to whatever you are doing, but it doesn’t always fit.

What Danger Mouse has managed to do is to keep James on track and a bit more focused – it’s a bit like the difference between drinking coffee all day or drinking hot chocolate. It’s not a perfect solution and the album does have some softer tunes but generally, a nice balance is struck and the result is a great album for anyones collection.

I should really point out, this isn’t a Gnarls Berkley album. It doesn’t sound like it – in fact it isn’t close. The is The Shins with a twist of lemon. If you like The Shins, you’ll love this. If you like Gnarls Berkley, then this might be a bit slow for you. DM’s input seems to be purely from a producer side of things rather than a creative… but as I said, that’s a good thing.

3 G’s out of 4

GGG