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broods conscious
Artist: Broods
Title: Conscious
Genre: Pop / Indie Pop / Downtempo / Electronic
Release Date: 24th June 2016
Label: Capitol Records


Album Review

When there is a huge desire to write the first full review for the last 13 years and not for a new album or for a band from the dark scene, then you definitely need to write. The New Zealand duo BROODS consisting of siblings Caleb and Georgia Nott was officially formed in 2013, although they played music and performed since childhood at the weddings of parents’ friends and in the church. In 2010 the duo without name won the Richmond’s Got Talent competition and in 2011, when Caleb and Georgia were in college, they created the Indie Rock band THE PEASANTS, which won two competitions and even received a grant. In 2013 Georgia studied at the Department of Popular Music at the University of Auckland and Caleb studied industrial design also there.

Both dropped out and became BROODS falling into the arms of known music producer Joel Little, who promoted many New Zealand musicians. Debut single ‘Bridges’ made by BROODS was released on their own and a month and a half later under Joel Little patronage the duo signed a long-term contract with major labels Polydor and Capitol Records. In 2014 the first EP was out followed by the debut full-length album ‘Evergreen’ in the same year, which received many positive reviews and high ratings in the category “Best Debut”. The project went on tour in New Zealand and Australia as well as in the United States later. By 2016 BROODS came already in the rank of new Pop stars, when the second full-length album was on the way.

The music of BROODS is called by the media “alternative pop music”, apparently in contrast with the classic Pop scene. The debut single was categorized on MTV as “a bittersweet Synth Pop echo chamber”, but of course there is no any Synth Pop music genre, but only influences and rare elements. The debut album was made in the classical sound of a modern Indie Pop with a bias more towards Pop and Dance music, than towards Indie experiments. It turned out exactly what could be called non-standard for Pop culture and catchy and attractive for Indie fans. However, the debut was still a try, although pretty successful. There were not many steps outside of the box, Georgia’s vocals sounded usually and did not show all her abilities and charm and the music was tasty, but did not become multi-layered salad of styles. The second album was much tougher and more diverse.

BROODS’ second album is called ‘Conscious’. The stylistic range has become much wider compared to the debut album. The basis remained in the Indie Pop genre shifted towards Pop music, however, Caleb and Georgia added more electronic sound components having something in common with Downtempo and Trip-Hop music and the sound engineers worked on mastering and mixing, taking the material to a new level. Georgia’s vocals deserve separate words. Most probably Georgia will not become the “best vocal of all time” and would hardly have won The Voice contest (although I would surely vote for her), however, her manner of singing and timbre are recognizable, her voice is emotional and the New Zealand or Australian accent, which is clearly heard, adds charm and uniqueness.

The album begins with the killer hit ‘Free’ released as a single earlier, which became platinum in Australia and gold in New Zealand. A powerful composition in the Indie Pop genre with a strong electronic component has rightfully become the main theme and gives energy for a long time during the listening. The composition begins with the acapella of Georgia turning into a pumping atmosphere of a mid-tempo ambient-shaped electronics exploding at the chorus. “I’d lose everything so I can sing.” ‘We Had Everything’ is already moving into a more relaxed Indie Pop direction with its unobtrusive light melody suitable for a kind of romantic comedy, not too catchy so the plot will be lost, but not too boring to fall asleep. “I turned you into a secret.”

The album continues with the song ‘Are You Home’ with greetings from 80s Pop culture and elements of what is now called Pop Wave, the basis of which has become regular Pop music. Light airy composition. “You know that I like to be right.” The second big album hit is the fourth song in a list. ‘Heartlines’ is a powerful hit, which can easily become the first in both the Pop music chart and the Indie scene chart. In fact, there is no musical melody in this composition, but the melody is sung by Georgia’s vocals. Bright summer romantic composition, which was covered by many YouTube bloggers. “We could fool the datelines.” If you extremely wish and have a lot of imagination you can hear Synth Pop and the “obvious” influence of DEPECHE MODE in the composition ‘Hold the Line’, however, it will still remain an Indie Pop song with elements of Trip-Hop and ambient.

And yes, most likely Caleb and Georgia listened to the neoromantic music of TEARS FOR FEARS (their cover version video could be listened on YouTube) and the DEPECHE MODE gold albums. Again, this song is a light and unobtrusive, but with a more various structure. “Do you mean it, more than ever?” The air ambient / downtempo ballad ‘Freak of Nature’ reminds a bit the work of RÖYKSOPP. An emotional composition with a soft rhythm, where Georgia’s vocals does not seem like Georgia’s vocals, because most of the song is performed by guest Swedish singer TOVE LO. The duo turned to be great, have to say. “Dancing scars from long nights.” Another deep airy ambient song ‘All of Your Glory’, where only Georgia sings, continues the journey through the clouds and open spaces of the sky. Perhaps having two slow tracks one by one is the only obvious flaw of the album. “I know, you only cry when you’re alone.”

‘Recovery’ brings us back to rhythmic music, probably even hitting the ground after flying through the sky with ambient music. This song was not released as a single and a video was not shot, however, it is worthy to be so. Maybe because there are more powerful songs on the album. “Holding pictures in my hands now.” The very emotional and rhythmic non-ballad ‘Couldn’t Believe’ continues the indie show bordering with the Pop scene. Here on my personal opinion Georgia’s vocals sound more emotional than in most other compositions, but my opinion is probably an exception. “You got the key from under the mat.” The soft melody of ‘Full Blown Love’ takes the listener to the area of a more Indie-oriented version of Electro Pop music with a touch of neo-romanticism. “Watching the world.”

Another slow melancholic song ‘Worth the Light’ flies again under the clouds of downtempo. “Something tipped me over.” The song ‘Bedroom Door’ is a little out of the general direction, style and atmosphere of the album into a strict Pop music reminding the material of NATALIA IMBRUGLIA. “They make it easy.” And when it was already thought that the end of the album would be down with unremarkable songs just to fill the space, the title track of the album ‘Conscious’ followed, sounding on the border of Indie and Pop scenes and a harmonious combination of music and vocals with elements of downtempo, Indie Pop, Trip-Hop and electronic music . The last song absorbed essentially all the ideas of the album bringing together everything that was done before. And although the song ‘Conscious’ is not the main hit and the protagonist of the album, it puts a beautiful conclusion and is one of the best compositions.

The second album of the New Zealand duo BROODS turned out to be more commercial than the debut, yes. However, Caleb’s composing talent and Georgia’s beautiful vocals were revealed right here. This exact album turned to be diverse and interesting to both lovers of Pop music and Indie scene fans, the hits from this album made BROODS known worldwide and not stay “potentially good young act”. The show business industry nowadays is overlapped with a huge amount of music material both new and old back in the history. This album will not become best album in the history of Pop music and probably passed by many fans of even such music, but in terms of genre, sound, hit and significance BROODS ‘Conscious’ is worthy not only acquaintances or place in the daily playlist on the cell phone, but also mention in the article on the history of Indie scene and Pop music. This kind of pop music could be interesting not only for MTV fans, but for everybody from all the subcultures.


Tracklist

01. Free
02. We Had Everything
03. Are You Home
04. Heartlines
05. Hold the Line
06. Freak of Nature (feat. Tove Lo)
07. All of Your Glory
08. Recovery
09. Couldn't Believe
10. Full Blown Love
11. Worth the Fight
12. Bedroom Door
13. Conscious


Line-up

Georgia Nott – vocals, music
Caleb Nott – keyboards and instruments, music


Website

https://www.broodsmusic.com/


Cover Picture

broods conscious


Rating

Music: 9
Sound: 10
Overall: 10 / 10




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