Breton - Sharing Notes - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Breton - Sharing Notes

Inspired by the immortal liner notes "Breton began life in a warehouse somewhere in South East London" I slotted this EP into the tray, sensing that it was going to be rather good. Breton's versatile new EP had me hooked from the beginning. Brimming with invention and ideas, Sharing Notes lures the listener in and insinuates its way into the consciousness. Throughout, the songs manage to achieve maximum effect with the minimum of fuss.

Businesslike in its brevity, Sharing Notes draws on electro-pop and post-punk influences, offering a masterclass in how to craft an album around basic electronic elements. Core to the album's identity are strong funky rhythms, beatbox grooves, old school synths, effective use of lead and backing vocals, and arresting lyrics. Opening track 'The Well', is characteristically confident and economical, with the singer intoning plaintively "I found a way to count it out" to a crablike rhythm over haunting accompaniment and squelchy synth bass. 'Penultimate', revelling in its cheap beatbox glory, is succinct and melancholy, before the classy title track, 'Sharing Notes', combines a cinematic string theme shifting in semitones, with unnerving backing vocals, and curious lyrics - "A shifting of the angle on which we build our house" - to disturbing effect.

The remaining tracks have an urgent, funky feel not dissimilar to The Rapture, as demonstrated on 'Episodes', with its triplet feel, chaotic live drums, and arpeggio runs, and, on 'Watertight', with its the Stranglers-esque weaving bass runs. The final track '15 x' makes the sort of garage disco racket heard previously on The Rapture's 'House of Jealous Lovers', foregrounding spiky guitars and funk drumming whilst the singer shouts out something inaudible in what may or may not be French.

The tracks on Sharing Notes lend themselves equally well to the dancefloor or as background music, and as such will go down well whatever the crowd. As the second EP in a trilogy of releases by Breton, Sharing Notes oozes confidence and I look forward to hearing their other songs.

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