Turin Brakes' sixth studio album, 2013's We Were Here, features more of the folky British duo's melodic, heartfelt music. As with Turin Brakes' previous efforts, We Were Here showcases the songwriting talents of guitarist/vocalist Olly Knights and guitarist/vocalist Gale Paridjanian. The album comes almost three years after the band's previous effort, 2010's Outbursts. It also appears on the heels of Knights' 2012 solo album, If Not Now When. Together as Turin Brakes, Knights and Paridjanian make sophisticated, often epic and deeply emotional '60s and '70s folk-influenced pop music, and We Were Here is no exception. Interestingly, Knights and Paridjanian were inspired to make We Were Here after they took the time to relearn many of their older songs. They also kept the intimate sound of their best work by recording the album live, utilizing recorded-to-tape backing tracks. The result is that We Were Here, while still sounding fresh and inspired on its own terms, is imbued with much of the lyrical passion and melodicism of Turin Brakes' past work. Here we get such songs as the lilting title track, the expansive, Pink Floyd-ish "Blindsided Again," and the rollicking and soulful "Guess You Heard." Elsewhere, the band digs into the bluesy ballad "Sleeper, the similarly country and blues-inflected "Inbetween," and the atmospheric, Mazzy Star-sounding slow-burn ballad "Erase Everything."
AllMusic Review by Matt Collar