Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Album Review: Broods - Conscious (2016)

Nah, I'm not sure why I've got this one either. Apart from it being another local release I couldn't let slip past. Which is kind of silly, because I didn't really expect to enjoy it. Let's call it an OCD thing and move on. I'm not really the target demographic for Broods, and I'm pretty sure Broods' music has a pretty specific target demographic.

So I'll try to be brief: this is a distinctly 2016 brand of synthpop, full of soft emo-tugging hooks and similarly persuasive production tricks. Cutesy colour-by-numbers electronic pop, immaculately produced - naturally - by Lorde collaborator Joel Little.

It isn't that siblings Georgia and Caleb Nott aren't talented, or not very good at what they do, because they are. It's just that the music they make doesn't really speak to me on any level other than a very superficial one.

Which in itself isn't always an issue either. I actually quite like similarly teen-geared stuff from local youngsters like Lontalius and Boy Wulf. It's just that for all of those pop hooks, Conscious feels very safe and a little too bland for my taste. It lacks innovation beyond a well-worn formula, and its intended inoffensiveness is actually a little offensive to me. It doesn't challenge me in any way whatsoever. But then, I never really expected it would.

For all of that, despite my cynicism, on a commercial level, with Conscious, Broods have successfully negotiated the often tricky album number two. It was flying high in the album charts when I last checked, and my opinion of it makes no odds one way or another. The duo's path is well set.
But, with synthpop being the super fickle genre it undoubtedly is, they may want to think about mixing it up or pushing a few more boundaries next time out. That’s all I’m going to say ...

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