The music on Broken Records’ sophomore effort, Let Me Come Home, is an alluring blend of anthemic, and sometimes melodramatic, indie-rock and emotional balladry that draws comparisons to Coldplay and Snow Patrol with a hint of Nick Cave’s introspective gloominess.
And while these similarities pervade, there’s also a certain Waterboys feel to it thanks to the wistful vocals of Jamie Sutherland. Not polished like Chris Martin (Coldplay) or Gary Lightbody (Snow Patrol), Sutherland adds an emotional and organic element to the songs while singing in more of an everyman’s voice with a pleasing hint of his Scottish brogue.
With the stylishly atmospheric guitars, dynamic arrangements and energetic indie-rock, the group sound similar, while not imitating, those bands mentioned previously. But they put their own fingerprints on things by including melancholic strings, choppy piano lines and expressive drumming. Each tune contains many layers that range from crisp guitars and smooth, deep bass lines to majestic keyboard passages while softer, subtler string tones temper the mood.
But it’s the way the layers are combined with creative song structures that make the tracks flourish. Whether it’s a fast-paced and crisply played rocker or a slower, aching ballad, Broken Records are adept at drawing us in with either style as Sutherland bellows with a coarse voice that can be both passionately rousing and intimately reflective.
The jagged hooks charm over time as they emerge from an underbelly of U2-like cascading atmospherics. The subtle nuances are interwoven into the artful rock so much that it takes a few spins before you realize the depth of each song. What at first may sound like the next wave of Coldplay/Snow Patrol influenced batch of songs transcends that trend with aesthetically layered and sweeping indie-rock that has a resonant warmth about it that keeps it fresh.