It’s been 5 years since The Shins last album Wincing The Night Away and I think I can speak for the majority of alternative music lovers out there in saying, “they’ve been missed.” Even though I enjoyed James Mercer’s side project, Broken Bells (with Danger Mouse), the results of that partnership where at best, mixed. On “Simple Song” Mercer has applied the lessons he learnt from Broken Bells to beef up The Shins sound to terrific effect. Moving the band into stadium pop territory without leaving behind the delicacy of their previous work, in fact everything on “Simple Song” is quintessentially ‘Shinsy (and yes that’s a descriptive word). When you consider the increase in popularity they’ve enjoyed during their hiatus, these sonic tweaks are smart. As they’re likely to find themselves closer to the headline slot at festivals, where a few weightier songs won’t go amiss. Hopefully I’ll get the chance to watch them live soon.
The new album Port Of Morrow is released on the 20th March