Sunday, May 2, 2010

Broken Social Scene

Broken Social Scene
The Fillmore
San Francisco, CA
May 1, 2010

I say it with no malice, but Broken Social Scene: what a fucking bunch of hippies, all bearded & whatnot w/their everybody-in-the pool ethos. It’s just a big old par-tay, chez BSS. The band last night was never fewer than five warm bodies onstage, & often grew to 8 or 9. This was the first stop on what will be their lengthy summer tour. As did not go unmentioned.

I’m rather fond of BSS’s albums. In particular (& probably like most people), I love-love You Forget It In People, the 2002 breakout. The songs are weirdishly wonderful, yeah, &/but it’s the interstices that are laden with all manner of little sonic gems, constantly surprising. You maybe just note them as production flourishes, but what I hear are all these discrete little fifteen-second masterpieces everywhere. Focused textural excursions to points previously unknown. That is the organizing principal of this music, as far as I’m concerned. [cf, also: Bee Hives, 2004. More righteous shit, that.]

Anyway, last night’s concert by & large took a different approach, opting for less subtlety, less open space, more in the way of just rocking right the hell out. Densely. I don’t begrudge anybody that, what with a packed-full house & five guitars & two drum-kits all playing (mostly) at once onstage. & then sometimes horns, keyboards, electronics & more vocals on top of all of that. There’re not many non-extravagant places to even go from there, right?

At well over two hours, I did find the whole thing more than a little exhausting, although I’ve been told I have a low-ish exhilaration threshold. It just doesn’t take that much to get me high, right? Anyway, things did finally get good & loose & spacey & weird enough for me sometime after midnight & a good ten minutes into “Lover’s Spit,” the final encore number. That was a sweet & genuine thrill.

The new album is called Forgiveness Rock Record. It comes out in a couple of days, although you may have already heard it by now. Here’s something a little bit older:

BSS Shampoo Suicide mp3


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