Reviews

Broken Social Scene
Hug of Thunder

(City Slang)

7/10

Back in the halcyon days of early noughties indie rock, the number of great guitar bands seemed endless. But if NYC felt like the centre of the universe, the great Canadian export of artists like Arcade Fire, Metric, Feist, The New Pornographers and Broken Social Scene challenged that assertion every step of the way. And while the latter didn’t generate the global acclaim of others, their place shouldn’t be understated, even if it was less celebrated. After all, a lot of those acts came from Broken Social Scene.

Returning after a seven-year hiatus with album number five, Kevin Drew’s evolving band remain as much of an incongruent collective as they do an indie supergroup. The spotlight isn’t on them the way it once was but, as ‘Hug of Thunder’ proves, this is still a Rolodex of pooled passions, projects and talents creating music that’s as unashamedly baroque as it is consistently brilliant in its ambition.

Here, tracks like ‘Stay Happy’ and ‘Vanity Pail Kids’ are music as a spectacle – all raucous vocals and righteous, happy pandemonium – and it’s that communal sense of fun that ensures BSS endure. Even when things slow down on the ghostly ‘Victim Lover’ and sombre, drifting echoes of ‘Please Take Me With You’, they pick it up to grandiosely close on ‘Mouth Guards of the Apocalypse’. Hiatus or not, they’re still proudly fragmented and anything but broken.

Support Loud And Quiet from £3 per month and we'll post you our next 9 magazines

As all of us are constantly reminded, it’s getting harder for independent publishers to stay in business, which applies to Loud And Quiet more now than ever, 14 years after we first started printing a magazine that we’ve always given away for free.

Having thought about the best way to support our running costs (the printing and distribution fees, the podcast and production costs etc.) we’d like to ask our readers who really enjoy what we do to subscribe to our next 9 issues over the next 12 months. The cheapest we can afford to do this for works out at £3 per month for UK subscribers, charged yearly.

If that seems like a bit of a punt, you can pay-as-you-go for £4 per month and cancel any time you like. European and world plans are available too, at the lowest rate we can afford.

It’s not just a donation – you’ll receive a physical copy of our magazine through your door and some extra perks detailed on our subscribe page. Digital subscriptions are available worldwide for £15 per year. We hope you consider this a good deal and the best way to keep Loud And Quiet in your life without its content, independence or existence suffering.