Broken Bells

Broken Bells - Broken Bells
Critic Score
Based on 23 reviews
2010 Ratings: #447 / 838
User Score
Based on 70 ratings
2010 Ratings: #118
March 9, 2010 / Release Date
LP / Format
Columbia / Label
Indie Pop / Genres
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Drowned in Sound

As musical collaborations go, the one embarked upon by James Mercer, mercurial singer/songwriter with esteemed Portlanders The Shins, and Brian Burton, better known as producer extraordinaire Danger Mouse, has to go down as one of the most unlikely. While perhaps not in the sublime bracket of ridiculousness inhabited by Burt Bacharach's mutual love-in with Elvis Costello and Dr Dre that reared 2005's ill-advised At This Time or Bing Crosby and David Bowie uttering Christmas carols to one another, it certainly set the proverbial cat amongst the pigeons late last year when Mercer announced Broken Bells was a fully projected work in progress and an album would be imminent.


Collaborations between high profile musicians seem to be happening with increasing regularity - see the recent tie-ups Them Crooked Vultures, Monsters Of Folk and The Dead Weather. In prospect they're often exciting, but in practise the results of their labours don't always live up to the stellar billing.

Jan 2, 2017
Falls apart after The Ghost Inside.
Dec 28, 2016
Definitely frontloaded, but overall a very strong album. The album falls somewhere in the vein of indie electropop, and James Mercer's voice suits this sound surprisingly well; it also gives him room for more experimentation than he has with The Shins. For a relatively low-key and subtle album, it's very infectious.
Mar 31, 2013
" What amounts to a dream anymore " Broken Bell
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Track List

  1. The High Road
  2. Vaporize
  3. Your Head Is On Fire
  4. The Ghost Inside
  5. Sailing To Nowhere
  6. Trap Doors
  7. Citizen
  8. October
  9. Mongrel Heart
  10. The Mall and Misery