photos by Brian Reilly

Broken Bells
Broken Bells

There's been a lot of buzz around the festival about Broken Bells, the new project of the Shins' frontman James Mercer and artist-producer Danger Mouse (aka Brian Burton).

Now, reaction to the debut disc has been mixed (we thought it fell short of the hype), but seeing them live is making us think we need to take another listen. It's woozy psych-influenced pop, with a bit of hip-hop swing to the beats, and while their songs didn't initially hit us that hard, they're starting to grow on us.

We caught their final performance of SXSW Saturday afternoon, on the patio at Mohawks, which had been at capacity since at least 1pm, with a line up down the street bigger than the crowd inside, which should give you some idea of the attention they're getting. [Now Toronto]

After leaving NYC, Broken Bells ended up playing at least four times during SXSW. The first of those shows was this semi-surprise AOL pop up show in a parking garage on Red River (right down the street from the BV party at Emo's happening at the same time) on Wednesday, March 17th. The second Broken Bells show was that night Stubb's (right down the street from the BV show at Club DeVille). More pictures from the AOl show below...

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