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Album review

Breton 

War Room Stories

added: 5 Feb 2014 // release date: 4 Feb 2014 // label:
reviewer: Matt Hamm

Breton - War Room Stories - Printable version
Not heard of London 5 piece of Breton? Then hold onto your hats and read on...these lads are going to have a special 2014.

Their 2nd album War Room Stories is out out out, and there is nothing not to love about this cascading thrash of banging beats, swirling vocal sampling and bassy toe-tappery. Opening track 'Envy' (the album's latest single) throws the indie lovers fishing line out; eagerly reeling you into the world of pounding steel drums, Foals-like vocals and a catchy chorus in "You're a Tourist and there's nothing wrong with that". It dances its way unforgettably into your cerebral playlist; the kind of track that makes it damn near impossible to not fall in love with the band from the get-go.

What is entirely more interesting about Breton is that they are not one trick indie-pop pony. War Room Stories is a collective effort. Breton are an example of the squat culture influenced art-rock come good. The album's best and most beautifully complex track 'Closed Category' is one of 5 on the album that calls in the marvellous cascading string services of the Macedonian Radio Symphonic Orchestra; tossing in a rhythmic kick-drum and snare, that trip over each other to join the brass in an epic wall of sound. 'S4', 'Got Well Soon' and '302 Watchtowers' wander down a different and darker path; coupling James Blake and The xx, to create something all-together more indie-dubstep and mysteriously minimalist.

Donft make the mistake that Breton donft like a dance though. 'Brothers' could have walked out of a Friendly Fires / Foster The People collaboration; pulsing with electro-funk and stylish synthesizing strutting. Whilst 'Search Party' and the album's final track 'Fifteen Minutes', take to the dance floor with a ferociously fast pace and chant inducing choruses that are sure to have the skinny jeans clad masses jumping and spilling beer in the sticky floored aisles.

Breton didn't start as a band, originally making music soundtracks to accompany their film projects; and it is this that sets them apart. Recording the album in Berlin has helped to create a wide and delightfully sumptuous array of interlocking influences, making War Room Stories an evolving and progressive treat to the ears. It's a wildly brilliant balance of styles that infuses sampling, cut-and-paste creativity, fizzing electronics, spikey riffs and just enough sing-a-long accessibility to crack into a saturated market yearning for something more awesomely refreshing.

OI 2014, get to cleaning a plate and setting the cutlery early; you've already got a truly brilliant album ready to dine at the best of the year banquet.

Words: Matt Hamm
Follow: @MattyMedia


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5 stars

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