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Broken Social Scene - Broken Social Scene

As final drum rolls and fanfare sign off the sound of Canada smiling, there can be only one conclusion. It’s glorious.

Whoever said less is more needs Broken Social Scene stuffed down their minimalist ears. A combination of the finest musical minds in Toronto - the articulately named smile inducing jingle fest ‘Handjobs For The Holidays’ is enough testament to this - The ‘Scene up the tempo and band numbers after 2003’s ‘You Forgot It In People’.

With the female powerhouse of Amy Millan, Emily Haines and Feist driving behind Brendan Canning’s bass and sparkly David Newfeld production, the collective range from an ‘Ibi Dreams Of A Pavement’ storm to the hidden indie sex of ‘Hotel’ and breathless hooked ‘Bandwitch’, proving that a lo-fi orchestra can work.

Although portions of the band’s shy twiddlings are removed, the new found drips of confidence prove just as alluring as the earlier ‘Anthems For A Seventeen Year Old Girl’ and ‘Looks Just Like The Sun’. ‘Our Faces Split The Coast In Half’ could well be a break-in at Toronto’s musical zoo, leaving Feist clawing her vocals from behind a luscious clacking backdrop. ‘7/4 Shoreline’ is louder and braver, while tracks such as ‘Finish Your Collapse And Stay For Breakfast’ still exist as vocal-less interludes that, as the entertaining sleeve notes state - are a reminder not to be a ‘rock band’.

To further assert this, despite now being a third in to what actually is a great rock album, the charming violin wielding ‘Major Label Debut’. Live aficionados of the band may know this track in its foot-stomping fast version. Now replaced with a deliberate gust - the original format merely secures a place on the ‘extra bits’ EP.

‘Windsurfing Nation’ takes the winding road to pop clapalong, where keep ‘em guessing vocals and dance party rhythm are complimented by a K-OS rap section before fizzing out in to the sublimely sweet ‘Swimmers’ - Emily Haines proving her lungs worth with the heartwarming ‘if you always get up late you’ll never be on time’. In contrast ‘Superconnected’ - a harsher and drum led stab - suits just as well.

Five minutes in to the closing track the swelling tunes finally burst - as climactic as the incredibly cinematic Explosions In The Sky and five times as cuddly. As final drum rolls and fanfare sign off the sound of Canada smiling, there can be only one conclusion. It’s glorious.

Tags: Broken Social Scene, Reviews, Album Reviews

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