Various Artists compilations are often something of a challenge to write about. Especially projects such as this one, “Broken Hearts Broken Sounds”, a compilation released in 2015 through US label Silber Records. The main reason for this being a difficult production to describe is that it doesn’t follow any thematic direction as such. It’s not a label sampler nor a genre compilation, and the artists aren’t tied to a specific concept either. It’s an album curated by one Michael Wood, and the red thread to this production is that these are all artists he has worked with at his company Broken Sound Booking.
We are introduced to The Veldt (synth pop meets noise rock and post-rock, possibly with some post punk thrown in for goods measure), The Affectionates (garage rock goes pop with psychedelic and punk flavoring), Hyphen Burnhole (eerie pop/rock with slight Zappa tendencies), King of Prussia (easygoing Americana with a folk orientation), Planet Cock (garage rock goes new wave), LoveyDove (singer/songwriter with a 60’s vibe), Something About Vampires and Sluts (new wave meets indie rock R.E.M. style), One Bad Apple (singer/songwriter style Americana), Sleeping Policemen (another take on the singer/songwriter style Americana sound), M Is We (post-punk with slight industrial tendencies), Miss Massive Snowflake (electronica flavored drones), Remora (new wave goes post-punk), Electric Bird Noise (ghostly reverberating instrument textures with drones and noise textures), Feel No Other (pastoral landscapes and firmer, Mediterranean tinged folk), Nighttime Tides (wedding march goes Americana in an odd and electronic flavored manner), Downlouders (psychedelic excursion with cosmic touches, drones and a touch of raga), Octopus Jones (light mood, summertime 60’s psychedelic pop) and at last Silver Screen Orchestra (drones and post-rock textures by way of guitar and violin explored in rough and raw as well as ambient landscapes, mostly with distorted instrument details).
A lot of diversity, and the label themselves describes this production as eclectic. As such I can’t see myself specifying a specific demographic that would love and cherish this production either, and as for highs and lows in musical enjoyment here they will be pretty much a result of individual taste more than anything else. Personally I’d probably select a few of the artists attached to Silber Records as favorites, M Is We and Remora can be mentioned.
I would suggest that those who generally enjoy checking out new music and finds pleasure in listening to a diverse compilation to find out what’s interesting and what isn’t will probably be the closest I can get to define an audience for this album. How many people one may find with such an interest in this day and age I do not know, but those that may recognize themselves by such a description can take note of this production.
My rating: 66/100