Broken Bells - Broken Bells
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 75 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 70 out of 75
  2. Negative: 3 out of 75

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  1. Sep 19, 2012
    Broken Bells is an album born from the collaboration of The Shins
  2. Dec 6, 2013
    This is much better than the score suggests. Innovative, catchy, haunting. An excellent debut from Mercer and Burton. These two have an incredible chemistry. Mercer's brilliant melodies and Burton's grooves matched together is nirvana.
  3. Mar 2, 2011
    Broken Bells does take a few listens to actually get into but once you get into it, it's a really good record. James Mercer's dark voice mixes so perfectly well with Brian Burton's producing talent and the result is a dark, unique, well written album. All In All, Broken Bells is something different and also very creative and unique. I recommend. B+
  4. Jul 25, 2011
    From the first thirty seconds of the premier track, High Road you know that you're in for a treat. Mercer's twisted vocals against the backdrop that is Burton's excellent production, takes you by the hand and guides you on a humble journey through 21st century alternative indie. The steady rhythm mimics a racing heart that punctuates every line with a smile. Perhaps the synths are too heavy, but not enough to deter from repeat listens.
    Each track flows well into one another, maintaining Mercer and Burtonâ
  5. Feb 9, 2014
    Beautifully varied music. The combination of the Danger Mouse groove and Mercer's voice makes for a perfect album. Some songs are chilling and others are amazingly catchy. It's perfect.
  6. Sep 25, 2013
    Broken Bells' self-titled first release drags you in with singles like "The High Road" and "The Ghost Inside" but keeps you around after multiple listens with a very strong B side starting with Trap Doors. James Mercer strays from the Shins to create something very different with Danger Mouse. James does a spectacular job with the vocal melodies and arrangements. This album has no weak songs and can be and should be listened to straight through, great to spin. Expand

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. Broken Bells is an honest-to-goodness debut album--there are as many promising flashes as frustrating moments here. Mercer and Burton have obvious chemistry, but they need to blend more for true alchemy.
  2. The album finishes almost as well as it started with 'The Mall & Misery' (a bit of country, a bit of disco, lightening bolts of new wave guitar, harmonies to intoxicate), proving the album's effective inevitability is not tedious and the quality is clear whichever direction you approach from.
  3. Broken Bells is the crown jewel of each musician's discography and is a necessity for fans of either one.