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Album Review: Turin Brakes – Outbursts

3 min read

On March 1st 2010 the Balham lads of Turin Brakes released their latest album simply titled Outbursts.

The duo have been around for a decade now and have produced some of the most artistically crafted modern folk albums to ever come out of the UK music scene. Their first album The Optimist LP met vastly positive acclaim and was nominated for a Mercury Prize.

TurinBreaksSeaChangeThe duo – Olly Knights and Gale Paridjanian – met at school and have been close friends ever since. Deciding to get together to form a band in 1999 the boys produced their first offspring The Optimist LP. Since their debut the band have released a number of Ep’s, 5 studio albums and a Live record. They are probably most notable for their top 5 single Painkiller (Summer Rain) as well as the popular single Underdog (Save Me).

Financed from writing the bonus track for Takes That’s’ Circus album, the band have now released their new record Outbursts. The guys have always made a point of challenging themselves as musicians and changing their sound for each album so as not to pigeon hole themselves into any stereotype or become predictable. Outbursts sees the band at the top of their game with melodically sublime pieces of folk pop and a new batch of classic gems. They are legends on the guitar and their craftsmanship is displayed on this record in numbers like Sea Change and the gorgeous ballad Paper Heart.

Opening number Sea Change starts the album off and is without doubt one of the greatest songs to be produced by the band. The string section is gorgeous and eerie with a video using stop motion toy army soldiers at war. Not to be missed. With powerfully emotive lyrics like ‘six billion backs against the wall, now do we walk or run’ counting down throughout the song and the incredible vocals of Olly Knights, the song is their biggest heart-string puller. Enough to give goosebumps to the hardest of heavy metal fans for sure.

Mirror is acoustic pop at its best and was a live audience sing-along favourite on their recent European tour promoting the album.

Paper Heart is another standout with its spooky key changes, Apocolips has that ‘gypsy’ feel to it while Never Stops, a commercial pop piece provides the band with a stripped back simple addition to the record. The band also throws in a rockier number for good measures in the form of Radio Silence.

Turin Brakes are one of the greatest and truly genuine (yet underrated) acts that the UK has produced in the past 20 years. Their precise and detailed attention to writing and producing songs that are touching and emotive is second to none. This is a duo that deserves the attention that has passed them by on numerous occasions however a band that seems settled with the prospect of two mates getting together to write and record for the sake of their passion for authentic music.

Buy Turin Brakes – Outbursts from Amazon