Into the Blue — Broken Bells

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In a season of s’mores and smorgasbords, the sights, tastes and smells of our collective gatherings are a welcomed tradition.

The reunions of our lives strike familiar and sweet chords of gratitude and camaraderie that harken comfort and joy as we gather together in preparation for another year in the books.

A welcomed reunion 10 years in the making is the sonic collaborative casserole of James Mercer and Danger Mouse, which serves up heaping scoops of wonder and delight under the name Broken Bells.

Mercer, front man for indie-rock band The Shins, has been cooking up his unique style for the better part of 20 years.

Combined with Danger Mouse’s vast list of contemporaries and talent, Broken Bells is a flavor best anticipated. Into the Blue is a recipe swap of influences that range from ’60s and ’70s soulful rock to ’80s synth R&B.

With songs like the horn-fused flow of “Love on the Run,” the retro hook-swing of “One Night” and the piano-laden “Invisible Exit,” Into the Blue is a dipped-in-drawn-butter and twice-baked delight for the soul.

– Chris Rucker