As emotionally dislocated as the album title suggests, Broken Social Scene are back with their first content to be realised in over 7 long years, ambling imagery spaced across substantial affection and fever, as well as a strong connection with the natural elements.
Going by the name of Hug of Thunder, the album is their 8th to date and was named after an intense jamming session.
The band are still instrumentally sunk in soft folk and rapid sways of hectic rock at its finest moments, and lyrically their music never leaves the realms of utter grace.
With 15 members comes an expected clashing of headspace, idea conception and instrumental outpour. What Broken Social Scene appears to be able to do, however, is distil this boisterous energy into something quite harmonious, all while always remaining tantalizing and surprising on the ear drums.
‘Stay Happy’ reins in 5th on the groups 12 track long playlist, and is arguably the stand out track. The single debuts the band’s newest member, Ariel Engle and her youthful vocals that layer the already booming, sound heavy track with an innocent, inviting vibe.
Overloaded and engaging production is always at the forefront of BSS’s take on song writing. The group are experts in expelling fun and stimulating kinks thrown into the mix, with odd quirks, speeds and rhythms always being broken and re-booted.
Capable of moulding discord Into utter solidarity is both musical and personal to the group, which frontman Kevin Drew focuses emphasis.
The band reunited following the Paris Terrorist attacks which Drew suggested really ‘hit home’. Unity was the key, and as Drew sweetly conveyed, "At this time and in the state of the world as it is, the one thing we knew we could do is come back as friends.”
With such a large cast comes an ever-rolling conveyer belt of vocal diversity. Vocals range from Feist, who just realised her own bluesy LP Pleasure in April, she appears on tracks such as ‘Vanity Pale Kids’ and most prominently the title track: Feist described the creation as more "a part of herself than the band."
The album is always switching, altering our space and forces us to face different breeds of sound. From Feist we are lead to the soft hums of Kevin Drew on the track ‘Please Take Me With You’, cradled in frail synths that slip the album into a palpable softening as Hug of Thunder draws towards a close.
Taking mismatch sounds and making them compatible and even beautiful is evident throughout this creation, married with the ever evolving vocal scope and tempo, the album feels hand crafted, cased in warmth and passed amongst every member.
The one single to receive a video was 'Vanity Pale Kids'. Accompanying the thumping beat is a trippy, music video directed by ring-leader Kevin Drew himself. Watch Below:
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