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Graham Lee
Broken Bells' James Mercer performs at Deck the Hall Ball last December.
The Shins are back! Broken Bells, the collaboration between James Mercer

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Today Reverb Recommends You Listen to Half of Broken Bells' Forthcoming EP Meyrin Fields

Thumbnail image for Broken-Bells.jpg
Graham Lee
Broken Bells' James Mercer performs at Deck the Hall Ball last December.
The Shins are back! Broken Bells, the collaboration between James Mercer of the Shins and Danger Mouse (Brian Burton), isn't heading to the back burner just yet. Following last year's self-titled debut album, the band will release the Meyrin Fields EP on March 29, featuring four songs that were recorded during the sessions for their first album.

One new song, "Windows," premiered over at NPR's website yesterday, while the EP's title track is streaming on Broken Bells' MySpace page.

"Windows" is an upbeat, quirky jaunt that sees Mercer go back and forth between two vocal styles. It's a welcome addition to the band's small collection of songs, diverging from the mid-tempo monotony that Broken Bells unfortunately fell into on last year's LP. Better than "Windows," though, is "Meyrin Fields." Its spazzy tone takes hold immediately, coming close to matching Broken Bells highlights like "The High Road" and "October." The new EP will also include the songs "Heartless Empire" and "An Easy Life," the latter of which was previously available via iTunes (it now appears to have been removed).

Hey, Mr. Mercer--now that we'll soon have this EP to go along with that lackluster but very listenable Broken Bells debut, how about getting really serious about that fourth Shins album? For now, these two new songs make the wait a bit more bearable.

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