Thursday, July 9, 2009

"Broken Records" Parts the Earth

As any music geek will tell you, the tradition of music from grand old Scotland is invariably strong with names like Simple Minds, Teenage Fanclub, Trashcan Sinatras, Travis, and Belle and Sebastian (I could do this for hours,) who paved the way for the recent onslaught of acts like Frightened Rabbit, We Were Promised Jetpacks, and The Twilight Sad; all croon as the soul of Scotland, each in their own way, but all tied together in some mystical way.

There is now, however, a new voice and sound (and considering my love for the company they are in, that is saying a lot) that may just out-do everyone, a seven-piece act out of Edinburgh called Broken Records.

I was first introduced to Broken Records late last year via Matt at 'Song by Toad', and to say that the few mastered tracks and demos I listened to were a tease is putting it very lightly. I almost would’ve rather not heard it at all, than to hear just a smidgeon. That’s how wonderful it was. Thankfully, we now have a full-length LP (which I’ve had on repeat for at least 4 straight hours) aptly entitled “Until the Earth Begins to Part.”

These seven artists have composed some of the most moving, lush, and dare I say, glorious, music I’ve heard in a long time. It’s a collection of songs that anyone who has had a sonic brush with them has been waiting for, since their self-titled EP. And let me revise: “Until the Earth Begins to Part,” is more than just a collection of songs, it’s versed poetry put to music, each track a passage of angst, apathy, distress, and resolve.

Each time, it feels as though Jamie Sutherland is singing to only you, each time the instrumental melodies live in perfect symbiotic harmony with his voice. From delicate strings and keys, to pounding percussion and blaring horns, Broken Records is an indie music symphony, the next evolution of Beruit or DeVotchKa. You will inevitably read comparisons to Arcade Fire as every band who has more than 3-5 pieces will get; put those aside. There are indeed similar elements, but Broken Records is more impassioned, more spiritual, more ethereal, and from the first alluring 1:40 of “Nearly Home” to the last crashing minute of “Slow Parade,” the listener will be nearly paralyzed in a sonic dream-state. As the music world begins to catch on to “Until the Earth Begins to Part,” it would not surprise me if the seas began to part for these gentlemen as well.

Listen: Nearly Home

Purchase "Until the Earth Begins to Part" from

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