Broken Social Scene

Broken Social Scene sounds like driving down an open highway on a sunny day in a car packed with people all chattering over each other. What a ride -- if you're in the mood for sonic and scenic overload. Building on the critical buzz from 2002's You Forgot It in People, on its new, self-titled release this Canadian act further crafts a sound most easily described as thick. Airy, dreamy and sometimes unintelligible vocals blend in with melodic guitar, electronic ambience and eclectic instrumentation; "Windsurfing Nation" best exemplifies this style, with propulsive drumming, layers of noise and multiple vocal hooks happening simultaneously. Meanwhile, "7/4 (Shoreline)" is a song for math-rock geeks and pop freaks alike, and "Hotel" has subtle swagger that dance-punks can only dream of. Although the band's exhaustive sound can be, well, exhausting, the moments when it all clicks make the music worth all the hype.

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