|Broken Social Scene — Hug Of Thunder (July 7th, 2017)|
Broken Social Scene — Hug Of Thunder (July 7th, 2017) → An acclaimed Canadian collective whose cathartic brand of indie rock boasts eclectic influences.
→ “Revitalizační akt. US Indie album (Billboard) #3, CANADA #14. Uznávaný kanadský kolektiv, jehož katarze vložená do indie rocku se může pochlubit eklektickými vlivy. Vokální sólo exhibice Feist v titulní Hug of Thunder upoutá okamžitě. Album obsahuje vše, co fans BSS milují: multihlasé harmonie, prostorné psychedelicky tónované nálady, slavné akordické postupy a ještě něco navíc. Je to velmi nečekaně protestní album. Panoramatické, epicky náročné a zároveň intimní, s plnou náručí pozitivity, překračováním zvukových hranic, dokonalými sbory. Zdůrazním to, co zpívá nejnovější člen Ariel Engle.
→ Dvanáct písní různých emocí, metod a technik, odkazujících na předešlá čtyři alba, zároveň je předčí ve všem. Album vřelé, důrazné, milující, melodické, nekompromisní. Stálo za to počkat si. Vinylová verze obsahuje 28 stránkový booklet, umělecké dílo a design od dvojnásobného vítěze JUNO Awards a bubeníka Broken Social Scene Justina Peroffa. Exkluzivním bonusem pro držitele vinylu je track „Old Dead Young“.
→ Kritické hodnocení sice není všude nejvyšší, avšak poselství zaujme. Jakub Šponar připomíná, že “tíha poselství desky je jeho největší devízou a zastíní i to, že Broken Social Scene neprodělali žádný hudební vývoj. Snové kytarové vyhrávky Kevina Drewa a výrazné basové linky Brendana Canninga zní stejně jako na předchozích albech, jsou to tak především texty, které promlouvají k těm, kdo se ztrácí v koloběhu fungování dnešní společnosti. Připomínají, že lékem na naši odcizenost je síla komunity, přátelství, a že i když se čím dál tím více blížíme realizaci dystopických vizí ze sci~fi románů, otevřeme~li oči a svá srdce ostatním, ještě stále máme šanci z naší existence vymáčknout něco pozitivního.”” Ben Tais AmundssenLocation: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Previous album: Forgiveness Rock Record (2010/Score: 8.3)
Album release: July 7th, 2017
Record Label: Arts & Crafts / City Slang
01. Sol Luna 1:20
02. Halfway Home 4:42
03. Protest Song 4:18
04. Skyline 4:11
05. Stay Happy 4:11
06. Vanity Pail Kids 3:59
07. Hug of Thunder 4:55
08. Towers and Masons 4:01
09. Victim Lover 4:55
10. Please Take Me with You 4:54
11. Gonna Get Better 5:11
12. Mouth Guards of the Apocalypse 5:44
√ Ohad Benchetrit
√ Torquil Campbell
√ Brendan Canning
√ Jason Collett
√ Evan Cranley
√ John Crossingham
√ Kevin Drew
√ Ariel Engle
√ Leslie Feist
√ Sam Goldberg Jr.
√ Jo~ann Goldsmith
√ Emily Haines
√ Martin Davis Kinack
√ Lisa Lobsinger
√ Adam Marvy
√ John McEntire
√ Amy Millan
√ David Newfeld
√ Andrew Neville
√ Julie Penner
√ Justin Peroff
√ Elizabeth Powell
√ Bill Priddle
√ James Shaw
√ Charles Spearin
√ Jason Tait
√ Andrew Whiteman
• Brendan Canning / Kevin Drew 1
• Brendan Canning / Kevin Drew / Ariel Engle / Justin Peroff / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 2, 3
• Brendan Canning / Kevin Drew / Justin Peroff / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 4, 10
• Brendan Canning / Kevin Drew / Ariel Engle / Justin Peroff / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 5
• Brendan Canning / Evan Cranley / Kevin Drew / Dave French / Justin Peroff / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 6
• Brendan Canning / Kevin Drew / Leslie Feist / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 7
• Brendan Canning / Kevin Drew / Shawn Everett / Justin Peroff / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 8
• Brendan Canning / Evan Cranley / Kevin Drew / Justin Peroff / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 9
• Brendan Canning / Kevin Drew / Ariel Engle / Justin Peroff / Charles Spearin / Nyles Spencer / Andrew Whiteman 11
• Brendan Canning / Evan Cranley / Kevin Drew / Justin Peroff / James Shaw / Charles Spearin / Andrew Whiteman 12
→ First 500 run vinyl featured coke bottle clear vinyl (sold out), 140g double~LP still available, gatefold jacket (matte UV), printed vinyl sleeves (matte UV), and a 28 page booklet with stitched spine affixed to jacket. Artwork layout and design by two~time JUNO Award~winner (and Broken Social Scene’s drummer) Justin Peroff and kimikimo. LP includes the vinyl~only bonus track “Old Dead Young”.
Peak chart positions:
→ US Ind. #1
→ CAN #14
Chart (2017) Peak position:
→ Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders) #149
→ Canadian Albums (Billboard) #14
→ Scottish Albums (OCC) #51
→ US Billboard 200 #96
→ US Independent Albums (Billboard) #3
→ US Top Alternative Albums (Billboard) #11
→ US Top Rock Albums (Billboard) #17
By Ian Cohen, JULY 10 2017 / Score: 8.4
→ On their first album in seven years, Broken Social Scene distill their sound to a vital essence. The band is focused and renewed, invigorated by the missionary spirit of their best work.
→ “The cynics fucking hate me. I know that much. They’re not fans.” I’m willing to bet Broken Social Scene ringleader Kevin Drew takes that personally. From the start, Broken Social Scene have made recklessly celebratory music that left their countercultural beliefs buried like dog whistles: “They all need to be the cause/They all want to fuck the cause,” he sang, rather cynically, 15 years ago on the canonical You Forgot It in People, long before virtue signaling and slacktivism became part of the lexicon. But after the Paris terrorist attacks of 2015 inspired a swift return to action following a five~year hiatus, they’re not hiding shit this time around.
→ Frustrated by people touting concepts of “radical community” and “self~care,” yet spending most of their day treating people like shit online? Hug of Thunder is too. Feel like a washed outcast when confronted by the sterility of festival music and the humiliating sound degradation of digital streaming? Hug of Thunder is too. Tired of nihilism being presented as the only option for rational thinkers? Hug of Thunder is too. While there’s an undeniable power in commiseration, Hug of Thunder is invigorated by the missionary spirit of the band’s best work. Drew and company try to make converts of lapsed idealists and people that remind him of his former self.
→ 2017 has found many of the past decade’s most beloved indie rock acts returning after long layoffs, and as with many of their lead singles, ”Halfway Home” was greeted not with a loud embrace of crackling buzz, but a shrug, disappointed by the lack of novelty rather than marveling at just how Broken Social Scene distilled their essence into four minutes. Which, yes, it sounds just like Broken Social Scene at the times when they’re going to lift you out of whatever hole you’re chosen to wallow in, even if it takes all 30 hands on deck.
→ The subsequent previews of Hug of Thunder also gave us “googly~eyed dream~pop,” “passed~out drunk and caffeine~wired studio wizards,” and also “the band with Feist in it.” Broken Social Scene are defined by a kind of utopian collectivism, and the lead~up to Hug of Thunder confirms that their excessive generosity can make them a seriously inefficient singles band. But in the same way that the members of Broken Social Scene renounce their star power to present a unified front, the individual songs of Hug of Thunder are best understood as reciprocal parts of a whole.
→ After the sunrise incantation of “Sol Luna,” “Halfway Home” gets Hug of Thunder to a height where the breathless plunge of the chorus from “Protest Song” can feel like a skydive without a parachute. On its own, “Skyline” forgoes any hook for mesmeric repetition, getting Hug of Thunder to a cruising altitude where “Stay Happy” can serve as a realistic mantra. “Vanity Pail Kids” has the kind of arrangement that would proudly bleed into an undifferentiated splotch on previous albums, but here, the jazz~handed chorus opens the possibility of Broken Social Scene as an up~with~people Earth, Wind & Fire indie~soul revue. Immediately afterward, the subterranean rumbles of the title track are a peek at what Feist’s Pleasure might’ve been with fleshier arrangements. Affecting as it is on its own, it also serves as a necessary segue between the “Vanity Pail Kids” and the muted soul~baring of the second half.
→ More so than Forgiveness Rock Record, Hug of Thunder presents Broken Social Scene as a rock band making rock songs, a coherent montage rather than a patched~together highlight reel. Any sort of industry leveling~up is probably out of the question at this point for Broken Social Scene and the possibility that they’re going for “hits” is entirely theoretical. They’ve never had a problem sounding big, but the inevitable point on each record where Drew and former producer David Newfeld couldn’t keep their friends in check has always been a subject of “bug or feature?” discussion. If not restraint, it’s possible that working with big~time producer Joe Chiccarelli (whose C.V. includes Frank Zappa’s Joe’s Garage and Jason Mraz and everything in between) actually provided boundaries. This is especially important as Hug of Thunder starts to loosen its grip in the second half; this is how Broken Social Scene albums usually play out, yet they forgo their typical Side B drift for some of the band’s most personable and emotionally urgent songwriting to date. It’s also where the stakes of the album are set, confronting haters head~on: love songs appealing to the disillusioned, grounding exercises for those with their head in the clouds, finding common ground between “Cause=Time” and “Anthems for a Seventeen Year Old Girl.”
→ As if their short time on this earth is running out, the band spends the last 15 minutes of Hug of Thunder getting their point across as clearly as possible on “Please Take Me With You” and “Gonna Get Better,” songs that add “plainspoken” and “compassionate” to their many modes. “Future’s not what it used to be, we still gotta go there,” newest member Ariel Engle sings before punning on the title: “Things are gonna get better because they can’t get any worse.” It’s the band’s most audacious dare to cynics — of course it can get worse, they’ll say. It’s probably gotten worse in the time it’s taken you to read this far. But on the ensuing “Mouthguards of the Apocalypse,” Drew speaks to them like a wounded healer. He’s been there and he’d rather kill his friends than see them roll their eyes at a song like “Gonna Get Better.” “I’m trying for the living and I’m staying so I can leave,” he sings on the record’s final words, underlining the message of communal uplift this band has been transmitting for almost two decades: If you forgot it in people, don’t ever let it happen again.
Ben Beaumont~Thomas, Friday ι 7 July 2017 08.00 BST / Score: ****
→ Broken Social Scene: Hug of Thunder review — invigorating emotional anthems.
ith 15 members and a rickety yet ambitious sound, Broken Social Scene have the feel of a Merry Pranksters~style hippie cult, and their shared values and sense of community prove bracing in an age of Trumpian individualism. With members like Feist and Emily Haines back in the fold for the band’s first album in seven years, every song is big, anthemic and emotionally invigorating, with the jazzy breakbeats in the rhythm section keeping them endearingly dog~eared rather than pompous.
→ Sometimes all this bluster is needed to paper over middling songcraft and rudderless segues, but for the most part the writing is on point: Vanity Pail Kids rides into battle with dive~bombing saxes and a huge tom~tom tattoo; Halfway Home channels Bruce Springsteen’s interstate energy; and Feist gives the title track the kind of wistfulness that avoids twee. The way Haines squeezes extra bars from her chorus on Protest Song, meanwhile, cajoling it into the next verse, typifies the band’s ramshackle invention. → https://www.theguardian.com/
BY DAVID SACKLLAH ON JUNE 28, 2017, 6:00AM / Score: B–
→ An older and warier band pledge to stay and carry on the fight.
Essential Tracks: “Halfway Home”, “Protest Song”, and “Hug of Thunder”
AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger / Score: ****
Twitter: https://twitter.com/bssmusic © Photo credit: Norman Wong
|Broken Social Scene — Hug Of Thunder (July 7th, 2017)|