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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Broken Social Scene: Live in Dallas


Kevin Drew and Amy Millan of Broken Social Scene

If I were to revisit my 2005 "Best of" list, Broken Social Scene's self-titled release would be much closer to the top spot (it was #9 on my list.) Hearing songs like "Shoreline," "Ibi Dreams of Pavement," and "Superconnected" performed live by the Canadian supergroup/art collective reaffirms why they're one of my favorite bands: they make loud, expansive, densely layered songs that have incredible depth and complexity, often drawing attention away from the fact that these are some of the most melodic, catchy pop songs ever.

While the absence of Feist almost automatically meant that this show wouldn't be as good as last time I saw BSS, this was still one of the best shows I've seen all year. Openers Do Make Say Think's swirling instrumental post-rock was a pleasant surprise, and the only complaint I have about their set is that it was too short. BSS' Kevin Drew is an intriguing dude. It's fascinating to me for some reason to watch this kid try to rein in and hold together the huge group of amazing musicians on stage, most of whom often seem more interested in veering off into total noise/chaos. Amy Millan was great in Feist's place, and "Anthem For a Seventeen Year Old Girl" sounded great despite some technical difficulties. The band's performance of "Hotel" (or as Drew called it, "dancing time") was markedly better than last time. It's become my favorite song from BSS:

Broken Social Scene Hotel mp3




****************************************

elsewhere:

The Decemberists and Lavender Diamond are playing tonight at Gypsy. LD's Becky Stark was formally-trained in opera, and from what I've heard about her live performances, she's not to be missed:

Lavender Diamond You Broke My Heart mp3

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28 comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Becky Stark is the greatest live performer on the planet.

9:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Built To Spill last Thursday was a hundred times better than Broken Social scene.

9:32 AM  
Anonymous turkish said...

PO-tato, po-TA-to.

9:36 AM  
Anonymous jared said...

BSS really was dissappointing last night. Not sure what show gorilla attended. I thought it seemed like they just didn't care, and there was a total lack of energy. I'm sorry, but it's just not BSS without Feist on stage. It's really not.

10:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anthems is originally sung by emily.

11:44 AM  
Blogger Julio Enriquez said...

chris-

do you have the setlist?
one song off of their 2nd lp that i don't like on the album but live is amazing is 'major league debut'

12:33 PM  
Anonymous david said...

hey, you were standing right next to me.

1:00 PM  
Anonymous ben said...

julio-

the version of "Major Label Debut" that you're thinking of is on the E.P. To Be You and Me that came with the exclusive version of BSS's S/T album. That's the version they play live too.

2:14 PM  
Anonymous Justin said...

Do Make was pretty darn good. Wish the drums had been a lot louder... for two kits it sounded really puny.

IN FACT, the other times I've seen them they've been a lot more dynamic. If they'd been cranked as loud as BSS was, they'd have gotten a lot more respect from the two dudes in front of me talking through the whole set of what is quite probably my favorite band.

I left halfway through BSS though. They just weren't doing it for me. I wanted them to. I tried really hard.

3:31 PM  
Blogger Dodge said...

interesting. they were a complete mess at the show here in Indianapolis. It was a start strong, go to complete shit and end strong kinda show. i was interested, but not enthused.

3:54 PM  
Blogger Wayne said...

they were totally switched on the time i saw them, amazing live, was lisa singing?

4:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see my head in that picture.

5:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if an opera school trained her, they should have their credentials revoked

6:19 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

oh snap. i love anonymous blog commenter humor.

6:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

when she seriously struggles with her voice tonight, stops songs, can't hit notes remember that it's not the first time - it happens every single time she sings. going back for years and years.

6:38 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

I also was at the Indy show. And I usually don't make this claim about bands, but they were on SOOO many drugs it was not even enjoyable. The inane rambling, songs falling apart, one of the guitarists waving his arms in front of his face to chase the trails. I'm guessing shrooms at the least.

Ironically, the part where it all fell apart was when they tried to play Hotel and couldn't get the keyboard part right. It was pretty rough to listen to.

Tell tale moment for the rest of this tour was uttered to the crowd at the end of the Indy show... "We didn't even want to be here. We're just doing this for Do Make..."

I can only imagine this tour getting worse.

That said, before the drugs kicked in, they were fucking awesome. Shoreline was amazing.

8:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

they've been touring non-stop for a longtime.

They just want to go home

5:02 PM  
Blogger Leonard Hatred said...

i loved every minute of the atlanta show

12:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think it was obviously because dallasa is a shit town (sorry chris.) the austin show was amazing. lisa is a little weak, no feist for sure, she is sort of majestic though. hotel, bandwitch, lover's spit (with chris from explosions in the sky), and anthems were the best. i'd like to hear a confirmation whether or not any of them were actually on drugs. i think that kevin drew almost always comes off as a bit of a joke, but the guitarist was going off with his hands.

3:13 PM  
Blogger Lindsay said...

BSS played an all-ages show here in Halifax when the Juno's were going on (Canadian Music Awards). I think the only member missing was Emily Haines. Even David Newfeld was playing on some songs. They were having so much fun.

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