Grumpy Rocker- Review of ‘Disasters: Ways To Leave a Scene’ – 02/12/2012

“Mark Lawrence (vocals / guitar), Lewis Betteridge (bass) and Phil Boulter (drums) are the three Southampton lads who make up the band Broken Links and Disasters: Ways to Leave a Scene is their debut album. With influences such as Joy Division, Depeche Mode, Nine Inch Nails and Manic Street Preachers, there is certainly some hopefulness of some decent music in the offing.

Electrik is the opening track on the album and as first impressions do count, it may come across as a little too electronic for rock tastes. In fact take the album in its entirety and you become aware that the Depeche Mode influences permeate through a lot of the music; there is just a heavier interpretation of it. Within Isolation rectifies everything by following Electrik and delivering a much heavier rhythm and tone, with the use of impassioned dual vocals that soar all over the track.

The subtle build up of Choice / Decay (Part 1) into the solid and spacious Choice / Decay (Part 2) is a wonderful highlight, yet too many times Broken Links sound too vocally clean leaving a yearning for more of a real edge to the music. Maybe soft synths in rock music don’t appeal enough – is this the curse of alt-rock hitting home again?

Shelter Your Loss manages to raise the stakes, but the noise afflicted —- / —- ends up coming across as an Ibiza anthem intro, rather than the creeping track you dearly want it to be. Even Therapy Sessions in the Dark loses its dark beginnings by giving way to lighter vocals and that’s just a reoccurring theme – you want it to be heavy, but it ends up going far too light.

Broken Links’ Disasters: Ways to Leave a Scene might well have garnered more positive review elsewhere, but on this occasion there’s too much emphasis on electronica to really hit home, which ends up ultimately detracting from the rock / metal elements. The gauntlet is now laid down, here’s hoping someone might break the alt-rock hoodoo that is inflicting this reviewer.”

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