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Sometimes it pays to be somebody's little brother. Were it not for his fraternal ties, singer and multi-instrumentalist Asa Taccone probably wouldn't have been able to get acclaimed songwriter and producer Brian Burton (better known as Danger Mouse) to produce his band's debut album. Taccone's older brother, a friend of Burton's, asked the producer to listen to the songs his little brother had been working on and give some constructive criticism. Burton liked what he heard, and encouraged Taccone to keep working at it. Several years and many demos later, the two got together and worked on what would become Electric Guest's debut album, Mondo.
It's no great surprise that Taccone caught Burton's ear. His songs all draw heavily on 1960s pop, soul and girl group sounds, and build on the classic juxtaposition of upbeat instrumentation and melancholy vocals. This style falls squarely within the sound that Burton has been honing for the past few years, particularly his work with James Mercer as Broken Bells. With Taccone and the rest of his bandmates, it seems that Burton has found a whole band full of little brothers.
FBI data suggest there was a slight uptick in violent crime in the first half of last year, but overall violent crime rates in the U.S. have dropped dramatically over the last twenty years. What led to the long-term decline, and why do some say it’s likely to continue?