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Broken Down - First Spit

Broken Down
First Spit
by Danny Sanderson at 16 April 2015, 7:07 AM

There are certainly times, as a reviewer, when, no matter how much you think you are going to love or hate an album, your expectations end up being proven wrong. There are albums by bands I love that end up being the worst in their recording careers, and albums that look, and initially sound, like they're going to be terrible, but then turn out to be hidden gems. BROKEN DOWN's debut release, "First Spit", is definitely one of them. At the beginning of the first song, I have to admit, I rolled my eyes a bit and thought that this would be one of those albums that I give incredibly low marks for, something which I really dislike doing. But as the album progressed, and it dawned on me what this band is all about, I grew to like all seven of the songs on offer here. The band themselves state that they want to mix and blend different musical ideas together to make something new, and I've got to admit it… they've definitely succeeded.

"You Covetous, I'm on a Roll", which opens this album, has an almost industrial beat, and some quite varied vocals. Some of the vocal parts on this track don't seem to sit well with the music, which is a shame. Unfortunately, this is a fairly weak song on which to open this record. "A Pill Hard to Swallow" helps to make up for the first song. It has a thick groove that works quite well, which turns into a pretty solid, cool chug part way through. The third song, "How Could It Be", has a strong electronic influence to it, and the song is sadly ruined by the vocals, which again don't seem to fit with the music on offer here. "On The Way To Be Yourself" is the first song on here where the music and vocals actually match up and complement each other. The song opens on a nice acoustic riff before becoming more aggressive, and the vocals go with the flow of the music and help bring it to life somewhat, and they work very well together. "Doom" starts off sounding like what TYPE O NEGATIVE with a lot of techno influences, which sounds pretty good. And then comes the chorus, which is, with no word of an exaggeration, a disjointed rendition of "Blue" by EIFFEL 65. Something about hearing the vocal line from a Dance Pop classic in the middle of a Metal track elevates this track from "just another song" to borderline genius. This is hands down the best track on the whole record, if only because it brought back fond memories of wedding parties in the early 2000's. The penultimate track, "Like A Witch (Daddy Doom)", is another modern Metal track inflected with techno flourishes, and it works really well. And again, they add their own twist on another classic song right in the middle of this one; this time it's "Daddy Cool" by Disco legends BONEY M. Again, it works very well, and is done in a way that means you can't be mad at them for lifting it so blatantly, because they put their own spin on it and make it work with what they've got musically. The final song on here, "Southern Wave of Goodbye" is a very good, solid piece of heavy, instrumental Metal on which to close this eclectic and bizarre album.

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and in this case, that old adage is true. This is an album that won't grab your attention to begin with; rather, it grows on you and gets better as it goes along. If anything, this album could have been made better by being mixed slightly better. Normally, this would not be my kind of thing, but this is definitely an exception. I loved listening to this, and I highly recommend that you give this a listen at least once.

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. You Covetous, I'm on a Roll
2. A Pill Hard to Swallow
3. How Could It Be
4. On the Way to be Yourself
5. Doom
6. Like a Witch (Daddy Doom)
7. Southern Wave of Goodbye
Lineup:
Jeff Maurer - Everything
Record Label: Altsphere Productions
     


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Edited 18 December 2017
 

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