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Broken Social Scene is a Juno Award-winning Canadian indie rock musical collective, characterized by numerous sounds, grand orchestrations featuring guitars, horns, woodwinds, and violins, unusual song structures, upbeat tempos and an experimental, and sometimes-chaotic production style. Toronto musicians and friends, Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning, started Broken Social Scene in 1999. Building on that collaboration, the band has since featured and spun-off some of the most recognizable names in indie rock including Leslie Feist, and Metric’s Emily Haines and James Shaw.
With the latest BSS release, 2010's Forgiveness Rock Record, the eternal question still lingers: what exactly makes a Broken Social Scene album a Broken Social Scene album? For some, it’s that omnipresent element of randomness and chaos — which is a fine theory and all, except Forgiveness Rock Record was approached on arguably the most stable footing the band has ever had, built as it was around the core 2007-08 touring line-up of Drew, Canning, drummer Justin Peroff and guitarists Andrew Whiteman, Charles Spearin and Sam Goldberg. For others, Broken Social Scene is defined by trippy, triple-guitar jams that slowly erupt into moments of brass-blasted rapture — but while that observation may be supported by Forgiveness Rock Record’s epic opener “World Sick,” it doesn’t explain the manic, string-stabbed berserker pop of “Chase Scene,” or the breezy, space-age-bachelor- pad swing of “Art House Director.”
And then there are those who say the Broken Social Scene sound is the result of producer Dave Newfeld’s psychedelic studio magic; however, for Forgiveness Rock Record, the band decamped to Soma Studios in Chicago and Giant Studio in Toronto to work with one of their heroes, Tortoise/Sea and Cake drummer John McEntire, who punched holes in the textural haze and coaxed the band into delivering their most assertive, forthright performances to date.
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