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Album Review: Broods - Evergreen

14 August 2014 | 8:04 pm | Naaman Zhou

Their debut is devoid of missteps, hesitancy or anything wobbly-legged

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Georgia and Caleb Nott are 19 and 21 respectively, but as Broods, they’re just past their first birthday.

Not so much precocious as frighteningly well-polished, their debut is devoid of missteps, hesitancy or anything wobbly-legged. With the help of producer Joel Little (Lorde), Broods seem to have sprung fully-formed from their Auckland cradle, instantly hitting a propulsive mid-stride of synth pop craftsmanship. In the mind’s eye, Evergreen feels equally at home soundtracking a year 12 dance in Wellington as wafting from the speakers inside a Brooklyn hairdresser.

It’s an intriguingly pre-globalised sound – like it was written on a cruising Airbus, but before the world tour was even booked. What’s undeniable though, is that the two Notts can craft a melody. Medicine is nocturnal and hypnotically beautiful, Georgia’s voice like a mournfully looped cassette track. With the dancefloor candy-wrappers off, these are songs of darkly ticking minimalism. With them on, Broods sound as good as anything else on the radio. In the case of Mother And Father, Superstar and L.A.F, they sound even better. Irresistibly constructed, catchy and with a thin veil of tugging loneliness, 12 tracks of similarly sweet-spotted pitching would have made Broods an unassailable over-night phenomenon.

Instead, everything else falls to one side or the other – bare-bones indie sadness or swirling hard-edged dance. Perhaps the album was consciously divided into these roughly equal thirds. Crowd-pleasers, navel-gazers and somewhere in between, there’s no reason why Broods should not be ubiquitous – they need only choose in which form to exist.

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