Broken Anchor is the charismatic union of singer/songwriter Austin Hartley-Leonard and producer Brad Gordon. The LA based, lo-fi indie-rock band, have been busy bees this year creating three stunning short volumes of work. Seamlessly flowing together, they make one heck of a collection and are all available for free download (with an option to donate) from the bands website.
“Three songs became six, which became eight, until there were twelve album-worthy songs on tape,” this blasé approach to production has reflected beautifully in the organic feel of the compilation, which exudes warmth by the bucket load.
To listen to Broken Anchor’s volumes collectively is a must as they are just so delightful as a well-rounded unit, which is credit to them.
From opening with the doo-wop treat ‘Leave The Light On,’ to the uplifting arpeggiated keys of ‘Scarecrow’ on Vol.2 and finishing with the melancholic ‘Evelyn,’ it’s an abundant journey.
‘Always,’ defines Broken Anchor’s sound and perfectly showcases the union between Hartley-Leonard and Gordon. In one song its clear that this duo are seasoned musicians, although a relatively new band they blend their ideas flawlessly.
Austin’s vocals are a driving force throughout; they ooze charisma and tell a story of love and life. They have a certain ethereal quality and little swells, especially in ‘Broken Anchor Blues,’ are reminiscent of a soft Brian Molko. ‘Never Leave Me Alone,’ a little grungy, more drum-laden track from Vol.2 sees Hartley-Leonard’s vocals open up and become lyrically more rebellious. With backing from percussionists John Wells and Quinn Orison and bassist Jonny Flaugher they add heaps of substance to the collection.
It takes a few listens to truly appreciate and be swept away by the writing and production quality of Broken Anchor. However, you will soon be swooning as their sound nestles in right at home with bands such as The Fleet Foxes and Band Of Horses. It will be exciting to hear what these guys muster up, in what I hope, is the near future. Personally they have been one of those bands that will stay with me . . . they just hit the spot.
Review by: Ciara Wilson
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