Friday 15 November 2013


Majorly digging this. It's quite different to the last song I heard by British band Breton, 'Got Well Soon', a dark rumbling number, almost exclusively electronic in its sound. This new track 'Envy' is a beautiful change in direction, compared to the dark basement club feel to 'Got Well Soon' - here we're thrown into a swirling world of addictive, breezy rhythms that touch you in all the right places. It's got a tropico-indie-dance feel to it; pointing out the obvious like a child would be saying "sounds like Foals" but on the other hand, but looking at it with a bit more scrutiny gives more away. However, that's not to say that first impressions should be discarded: these delicious sounds are for real and they're in my ears right now and I love them.

I need to get a grip. I can't very well sit here listening to this song on repeat like a lunatic, can I? How would I ever finish my washing? Or make lunch? So I'm gonna purge myself of what I'm feeling about it. Syncopation plays a massive part, offbeat rhythms crossing over each other keeping your ears busy, giving a sense of the gloriously unexpected to the song. This repeated instrumental refrain, with steel pans, glockenspiel, synth beeps, bass guitar, drums and strings, is really dynamic, always feeling like it's leading into something, rather than remaining the mainstay of the song. The drums are real, played with gusto, and filled with delicate touches of the hi-hat - they keep to a general house or disco beat for longer, more driven parts of the track. Actually, I'm gonna stick with house, cause the rich piano chords that clomp down on the song from early on, and their pattern, really do conjure 90s house music. Just saying. It does.

The piano chords are just one part of the song's thick and richly populated orchestration. Strings and a brass section arise in the two more driven parts of the song, building up in the last section to a genuinely symphonic ending, with virtuoso bass sidewinding with little variations the whole time, the steel pans adding their sharp exotic lilt to the mix. The vocals are simple, raw, understated, yet yelled out in lush layers of natural harmony - perfect for sing-a-longs and by turns perfect for a live setting. They sit superbly comfy in the mix with everything else. Fast-paced indie-dance with an orchestral-yet-90s-house feel - that's what this is. And it's lovely - in composition, dynamic, and sound.

'Envy' is out properly on January 23rd 2014 as a single from upcoming second album War Room Stories, due for release on February 3th 2014 on Breton's own imprint label Cut Tooth, through Believe Recordings.

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