Until the Earth Begins to Part is the debut album from Edinburgh indie bunch Broken Records, not that you would be able to tell from listening to it. Featuring an assortment of country instruments gives the album an air of professionalism, not to mention a beautiful folky feel.
On first track ‘Nearly Home’ the band draw the listener into their unique sound on a lengthy instrumental intro. Straightaway it is clear that Broken Records are somewhat different to the usual folk band. If there is any comparison to be made, the various techniques recall Beirut at their best. Until the Earth Begins to Part is a much more diverse experience than the bands contemporaries however, with each song bringing in a different influence.
The amazingly titled ‘If the News Makes You Sad, Don’t Watch It’ has a heavy ska sound running throughout, which makes it a feel good and standout track. ‘A Good Reason’ has a heavier folk punk sound, maybe like a less naff Gogol Bordello, but don’t let that comparison put you off. The talented band manage this by ramming as many different sounds into the tracks as possible, with violins, cellos and more being utilized.
In comparison to the lavish music made, the vocals provided by Jamie Sutherland can, at times, seem out of place with his voice occasionally entering operatic territory. However, this is a small issue as, more often than not, his husky commanding voice fits perfectly with the sharp lyrics.
Overall, Until the Earth Begins to Part is a solid first offering from an equally solid band. With many nice moments, and a range of instruments that are almost extinct in good quality music today, it is definitely worth a listen. Plus, lets face it, who can say no to an album that features an accordion?
Words: Mike Rudge