Don Broco – Amazing Things (Album Review)

Don Broco – Amazing Things
Released: October 22, 2021

Lineup:

Rob Damiani // lead vocals
Simon Delaney // guitar
Matt Donnelly // drums, lead and backing vocals
Tom Doyle // bass guitar

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I’m sure this doesn’t need to be said, but I’m going to say it anyway. Don Broco is one of those very exciting bands who just keep drawing the eyes. They produce innovative music and ways of drawing attention to themselves, they don’t follow any sort of rules, and Rob Damiani’s mullet is extraordinary. Amazing Things is the band’s fourth studio album and it is nothing like you’d expect. Even if you already expected something ground-breaking from them after the three year wait. Just prepare yourself, okay?

‘Gumshield’ strides out of the gate with a noticeable swagger. It’s a strong start to the album and immediately rousing and playfully aggressive. The lyrics are quite repetitive, but that’s the charm with a song as catchy and melodic as this. And I don’t know what that pipe/whistle/flute type instrument is that runs throughout the song but it is genius.

‘Manchester Super Reds No 1 Fan’ would make a crowd go mental. It’s fast and rhythmic and is just crying out for crowd involvement to scream “Manchester super reds number one fan!”. The boys really know how to build anticipation and it’s in the siren that weaves in and out of the track. And here’s the first song to fly out of the left field, ‘Swimwear Season’ gives us retro vibes combined with some crooning vocals. The vocal effect or the type of microphone used and the clunky keys really feels like a flickering sepia movie with girls in high waisted bikinis and boys in striped board shorts tanning by a pool. And this vision is punctuated by some filthy, gritty riffs. It’s a little bit grungy and very cool.

Let’s stay in the left hand lane with ‘Endorphins’ because this one is slightly weird. Perhaps it’s a bit more pop than rock, and the little sound effects scattered through this track are those lollies with the liquid centre—fun and delicious. Of course there’s still the riff heavy rock sound to this track, and it leads well into ‘One True Prince’ in that we’re ready for anything yet soothed by a stadium rock track. It feels emotional and real, although after the previous four tracks it’s almost a palate cleanser because it is so ‘normal’.

There’s always that one song that stands out on an album, and in Amazing Things it’s ‘Anaheim’. Oh boy, it’s sexy. Don Broco is a fun, cheeky, rocking band and for them to pull this one out of their pocket just broadens their already wide scope. It’s seductively slow, and introduces some plucky guitar riffs that flow into a sweeping melody. Add some soaring vocals overtop and you’ve got a song that people fall in love to.

But let’s pick the vibe up a bit, introduce some spacey vocals, and slide on some black speed dealer sunnies. ‘Uber’ is that edgy song you want to come on at a house party when everyone is dancing. It’s the kind of song that you turn up in the car, wind down the window and hang your arm outside. It has a cool factor of 10. ‘How Are You Done With Existing’ is also cool, in an edgy, rocky type of way. Listen to this song when you’re feeling moody and want a thicc riff.

Don Broco swing us in another direction completely with ‘Bruce Willis’—it almost feels like the start of a musical where the main character is going through some type of hardship. But then we tune it low and turn up the attitude and synth effects. Ever heard a song that shouts “yippee-ki-yay, motherfucker”? Well, you have now. And if you want some chunky riffs, you need ‘Revenge Body’. It’s a decent song, but perhaps doesn’t hold your attention as much as the other tracks.

Come and get thrown for another loop with ‘Bad 4 Ur Health’. I’m getting indie vibes, more retro synths, and there’s this interesting little drum beat that is startling and addictive. You just want to hear it again but it’s elusive. The way that the band play with you during this song is frustratingly good. They make you work for it too, and raise the energy just to tone it down again. What a tease.

It’s been a wild ride but we’re at the closing track. Sit yourself down and let me paint you a picture of ‘Easter Sunday’. This is a sunset drive. The kind of drive where in your memories it’s in slow motion. Maybe you’re coming back from a beach day and the sun is leaving streaks of pastel lavender and peach across the sky as it sets. You’ve got your friends in the car, and the windows are rolled down, wind blowing through your hair. Your skin is salty and you’re eating Maccas and sipping that syrupy coke. It’s been the perfect summer’s day.

The best songs are those you associate with a happy memory, and ‘Easter Sunday’ is the type of song that deserves a stellar memory attached. Close out your perfect summer day with this perfect album closer.

Amazing Things is an album full of stand-alone songs that somehow fit together perfectly. It’s so varied, and not at all what you’d expect. Don Broco have managed to weave together tracks that have attitude, swagger, sex appeal, cheekiness, and playfulness, and make it sound effortlessly good. Is this talent? I bloody think so.

Don Broco – Amazing Things tracklisting

1. Gumshield
2. Manchester Super Reds No.1 Fan
3. Swimwear Season
4. Endorphins
5. One True Prince
6. Anaheim
7. Uber
8. How Are You Done With Existing?
9. Bruce Willis
10. Revenge Body
11. Bad 4 Ur Health
12. Easter Sunday

Rating: 9/10
Amazing Things is out this Friday via Sharptone Records. Pre-order here.
Review by Ebony Story

About Ebony Story (156 Articles)
Wall of Sound Music Journo & Podcast Host // Loving the heavy heavy

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