Broken Bells is an American indie rock band composed of artist-producer Brian Burton and James Mercer, the lead vocalist and guitarist for the indie rock band The Shins. Broken Bells compose and create as a duo, but are joined by a full band on tour. Following their 2010 self-titled debut album, the duo released an EP, Meyrin Fields, in 2011 and their second studio album, After the Disco, on February 4, 2014.
The project was first announced on September 29, 2009. The pair decided to work together after meeting at the Roskilde Festival in 2004 and finding they were fans of each other's work. It took four more years before the two started working together and by March 2008 Mercer and Burton began recording together in secret at Burton's Los Angeles-based studio. The two describe their material as "melodic, but experimental, too."
Their self-titled debut album has sold over 400,000 copies domestically, putting the album at #7 on the Billboard 200 and #1 on iTunes. The album has received positive reviews. Rolling Stone magazine gave it a 4 star review and stated that it was “the year’s coolest left field pop disc.” Besides their album being among the year’s highest charting debut albums, the band had sold out gigs on their first ever tour.
On October 8, 2013, Broken Bells announced their second album, After the Disco. On November 4, 2013, Broken Bells released their first single from the album, titled "Holding on for Life". The second album was released on February 4, 2014.
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