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Broken Social Scene

Broken Social Scene

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Album Review

In Canada, Broken Social Scene is somewhat of a phenomenon. Since wooing fans and critics alike with their 2003 Juno Award-winning album You Forgot It in People, the band's peculiar popularity has made them stars. The community that surrounds the 15-member-plus band is a family-like atmosphere with its many Canadian artists and musicians. When listening to Broken Social Scene, you also get the individual sounds of Feist, Stars, Memphis, Metric, and Apostle of Hustle, among others. It's camaraderie and education combined. The lush dynamic that carries Broken Social Scene's self-titled third effort is definitely built upon that. The 14-song set is as bright and moving as the band's previous efforts, but Broken Social Scene holds more charisma, more depth, and surely more complexities. The mix isn't messy in conventional terms. It's artistically untidy without production boundaries. Album opener "Our Faces Split the Coast in Half," which features the Dears' Murray Lightburn, makes a grand entrance with its polished horn arrangements, tight guitar riffs, and hypnotic harmonies. Additional standouts include indie rock moments such as "7/4 (Shoreline)" and the nervy "Fire Eye'd Boy." Handclaps and crowd chatter dosie-do with a sharp rock aesthetic on "Windsurfing Nation," which was the original title. Here, Toronto rapper K-Os and Feist vocally find their way through this majestic cinematic backdrop for one of its finest songs. From here, Broken Social Scene is a simply a rush of mini epics: "Handjobs for the Holidays," "Superconnected," and album closer "It's All Gonna Break" (this could have been a Nada Surf song) showcase how smart, creative, and brilliant this band truly is. Broken Social Scene are more than a collective; they're an orchestra for both the slacker generation and the literati.

Biography

Formed: 1999 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Broken Social Scene materialized in 1999 when K.C. Accidental's Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning, formerly of By Divine Right, bonded their friendship into a band. They spent the next few years honing an atmospheric rock sound in their native Toronto and the dynamic was great. Feel Good Lost marked their debut album in 2001 and introduced a revolving cast of Canadian indie musicians. Drew's fellow mate from Do Make Say Think, Charles Spearin, was added to the band, as well as Evan Cranley (Stars),...
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