Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Columbia Records (2010)
This is the latest from Shins frontman James Mercer and producer/musician known most popularly as "Danger Mouse". I am a fan of both Mercer and Danger Mouse's past projects, but this record does very, very little for me. The album is primarily an audial montage of samples, studio loops, and clips by Danger Mouse accompanied by painfully boring vocals by Mercer.
I haven't been impressed with what James Mercer has done with his voice in the past seven years (making 2003's Chutes Too Narrow by The Shins my most recent favorite by him), and this latest project, "Broken Bells" just pushes my interest off further in that unfavorable direction. The songs are soulless and unmemorable and the forced combination of Mercer and "Mouse" remind me of one of the not-so-great tracks off of the Judgement Knight soundtrack.
You can hear the whole record HERE. And listen hard for the highlights in Mercer's voice that aren't highlighted at all, and try to stay focused despite the predictable compositions that seem to never end.