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Music, Print, Reviews December 8, 2021

Album Review: This Broken Beat – Far From Home

by Kevin Johnston

Julio Perez, lead singer of This Broken Beat has the kind of pop-rock cross-over voice that would make Adam Levine turn his chair around. Perez’ tenor shows clear Ed Sheeran influences, and with such an asset at the heart of their sound, it’s no wonder This Broken Beat shot for the stars on Far From Home.

Opening track “Fever” throws the audience every pumped-up-kick, dubstep bass-wub and emo guitar stab imaginable. It’s a lot, but the band maintains dynamic sensibilities amongst the thick production, breaking things down to the intimate amidst the chaos.

“Static Motion Molly” lets us take a breath with balladry similar to A Great Big World, but adds – you guessed it – broken beats to the down tempo track to keep things moving. There are emo moments akin to Death Cab For Cutie throughout, partly due to “post hardcore” drummer Annie Richardson who’s excllent playing drives the bus all album long.

This Broken Beat from left: Julio Perez, Dilon Thomas and Annie Richardson. All photos by Talia Perez at Maroon Hills Photography

“The Hills” offers hook-laden, shiny pop with touches of 8-bit synth, and “Locked Away” brings an epic sentimentality akin to the rock drama of contemporaries Silver & Gold. Closer “Wildfire” is a cruiser, somehow like the first beachy, pop tracks Sugar Ray released after relinquishing their (awesome) hard rock sound back in the day.

“Warm” goes full RnB slow jam complete with nylon string guitar, grind-worthy beat and a hook fit for the kings of big radio. Perez’ voice feels super at home in this genre, and we wouldn’t be surprised if he, like Sugar Ray did, soon takes the full-on plunge into pop.

With the full-force of every bell and whistle behind Far From Home, the production (notably also by Perez) is impressive. There are a million different tones, sounds and effects, making for a record that’s anything but boring. Perez is no doubt a talent, both as a singer and especially as a producer. Though there is something yet to be learned in the songwriting craft, and yet to be found in terms of identity, Perez, Richardson and Dillon Thomas are a young group showing a ton of promise that’s anything but broken.

Far From Home is out now – catch This Broken Beat live on Saturday, December 18 at the Parade Of Lights in Denver, 16th & Arapahoe on the Nativity Float, from 6-7pm. Click here to visit thisbrokenbeatofficial.com for more