Mailbox: Broey. – Fragments

Like so many others, in the few years preceding the pandemic, I sheepishly fell for the lofi girl. It was truly easy listening for millennials (and zoomers). At the time, I was overwhelmed with studying for the bar, so when I wasn’t actively writing music myself as an outlet for the stress, I simply could only handle background music. I was exactly the demographic the chilled cow was targeting, someone who only needed music to study to. But despite generally not paying close attention, I would occasionally notice a song here or there that would stand out from the rest, and make note of the artist. It often struck me how many of them seemed to be producing these lofi beats in parallel to other styles, sometimes many other styles. It was as if, for many of these artists, the production of the study beats served a similar purpose as did the listening: reducing stress by embracing the loopy calm. Often a quick dig into these artists’ catalog would reveal they primarily produced brostep or house or metal, or all of the above, or just whatever. There was seemingly no unifying route to the study beats, just a collective individual embrace of the microgenre youtube birthed.

I was recently sent this lovely record by Scranton, PA-based producer, Broey. His latest record is Fragments, a nice and sweet 24-minute journey through an array of midtempo house subgenres. As it turns out, Broey. is exactly one of these types—a guy who’s been making music for years, and who’s explored a range of genres, but who’s seen the most substantial reaction to his contributions to the world of study beats. He himself describes those contributions primarily as community efforts—lots of collaborations, and a way to connect with like-minded producers across the globe. This in contrast to Fragments, which he describes as a passion project.

Fragments shines in the moments when it focuses more on the fundamentals. The stand-out is without doubt the opener, “Like That,” an effective and pleasingly modern take on Chicago house, even flirting with elements of juke. Similarly, “Run For Cover” is my second pick because it doesn’t try too hard to get fancy. It’s bread and butter modern house music primarily suited for a dancefloor, but with enough hookiness and personality to stick in your ears after the fact. You can tell Broey. is a producer who can shape-shift, and that’s enviable, but it also seems like with this project he’s intent on drilling down closer into the music he actually loves. Study beats are a means for many to maintain equilibrium and even make friends, but underlying all those waves and waves of constant chill, we all need some substance.

No bandcamp for this, unfortunately, but you can find Fragments for streaming all over.

Broey. – “Like That” (sc)

Broey. – “Run for Cover” (sc)


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