Debut album “I Could Be Asleep If It Weren’t For You” from Sheffield based baroque pop duo is a project that combines both the innovatively futuristic and elegantly classical. The result is a bewitchingly timeless miscellany of music.  

The first track off “I Could Be Asleep If It Weren’t For You” introduces the album with its dramatic, baroque sound. With Gina Walters’ sophisticated vocals weaving in and out of intricate cello harmonies and emotive piano chords this is a key track on this project where Before Breakfast’s classical influence shines through. Scattered with strategically placed, echoing backing vocals and dotted with lively, expeditious cello chord patterns Before Breakfast spin an enchanting web of sonic opulence. The third track “Brush My Hair (and tell me that you love me)” is equally as emotionally charged and riveting combining both playful and serious instrumentation to create a rich portrayal of emotion. Telling a tale of the excitement of the beginning of a love affair this songs lyricism is as vivid as its instrumentation.  

Another impressive track off “I Could Be Asleep If It Weren’t For You” that continues in its almost theatrical energy and layered sonic intricacies is “I’m A Good Friend”. With dramatic snippets from recorded phone calls, racing and suspenseful piano, stern cello instrumentals and of course not forgetting those echoing and sporadic vocal harmonies this song is one of the major highlights of this album.

Again, tackling a prevalent topic of confusion within modern relationships Before Breakfast use their music to convey every aspect of an emotion including the perplexing parts of it. “I’m A Good Friend” is also a track that demonstrates excellently the charming way in which through their music Before Breakfast bring the contemporary and the classical together. 

Whilst in their instrumentals there’s an undeniably baroque atmosphere, one of the most delightful aspects of Before Breakfast is that they merge this with the innovative and visionary creating songs that both take the listener back in time and propel them into the future and contemporary world.

A prominent way in which they achieve this is in their lyricism which often tackles topics such as women’s power and feminism in a progressive manner. Tracks such as “Stand” boldly speak out about the struggles of a modern woman balancing economic security, personal freedom and motherhood. Before Breakfast’s progressive lyricism combined with some experimental vocals creates a sense of the future in their music.  

Where Before Breakfast are at their best is when they’re creating a track filled with layers of different sound and emotion. Some of the more simplistic piano ballads off this album such as “She” and “i” sound a bit half-baked and far less engaging than what Before Breakfast prove they can orchestrate on “I Could Be Asleep If It Weren’t For You”. However, this being said “I Could Be Asleep If It Weren’t For You” is nevertheless an extremely impressive debut album that defines Before Breakfast’s own unique sound. As long as they can keep pushing themselves to develop their weird and wonderful soundscape this is a band that will go far.