Gretchen L. Kelly, Author

Playing On Repeat: Broken Bells

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“Girl take a seat, rest your weary bones.  Your secret’s safe in my hands.  Tell me about the years and let me buy an hour.  Maybe help me to understand.  Ain’t nobody calling, ain’t nobody home.  What a lovely day to be lonely….”

-Broken Bells, Holding On For Life

Something old, something new….  that’s what you’re getting with this one.  I started listening to Broken Bells last summer.  They are the duo of James Mercer (The Shins) and Brian Burton (aka Danger Mouse).  They released their first self titled album in 2010.  And two whole years later I stumbled on to one of their songs and I was sucked in by the melody, the earthy yet psychedelic music.  It was it’s own genre and I immediately added most of their catalogue to my shuffle.

This first song is from their debut album.  I love Mercer’s voice in general, but I think this song shows it’s depth, it’s higher range and just a hint of a lilt that is intoxicating.  And a hand-clapping chorus gives the otherwise dark song an upbeat vibe.  And I love it.

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The second song is off their new album, After The Disco, due out in January.  This song has an other-wordly feel but Mercer’s vocals keep it grounded.  I can’t wait to hear the rest of the album…

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