Showtime!: Broken Social Scene, Club Cinema, Pompano Beach

The unique set-up of Broken Social Scene is such that each performer that joins the band brings something different to the show.

For example, the female vocal part of this Canadian ensemble has been held down by such strong artists as Leslie Feist, Metric’s Emily Haines and Stars’ Amy Millan. But Lizzie Powell had another take on things at Pompano Beach’s Club Cinema. Her sometimes girlish style fit one song — Anthems for a Seventeen-Year-Old Girl — to a tee, while working brilliantly other times as well.

Broken Social Scene's Brendan Canning, Andrew Whiteman and Kevin Drew. (Photo by Jonathan Tully)
Broken Social Scene's Brendan Canning, Andrew Whiteman and Kevin Drew. (Photo by Jonathan Tully)

That’s the joy of what this group is about: Kevin Drew, Brendan Canning and Justin Peroff — the three men who’ve been at this group’s center — surrounding themselves with some of Canada’s top rock musicians and seeing where each combination takes them.

This particular group not only played some of the Scene’s most appreciated songs — critical and fan favorites on display included “7/4 (Shoreline)”, “Cause=Time” and “Fire Eye’d Boy” — as well as songs off both Drew’s and Canning’s recent solo efforts, but also allowed their members to step forward and have their own moments in the sun.

Kevin Drew of Broken Social Scene. (photo by Shaun Flagg/Skope)
Kevin Drew of Broken Social Scene. (photo by Shaun Flagg/Skope)

Guitarist Andrew Whiteman (also of Apostle of Hustle) sang a great version of the band’s “Looks Just Like the Sun”, while guitarist Sam Goldberg shined when he shared vocals with Drew on a psychedelic song by Goldberg’s Montreal-based band Hawaii. There was also the admirable risk taken by another guitarist, Do Make Say Think’s Charlie Spearin, who introduced an avant-garde piece with the help of saxophonist Leon Kingstone. While it was a cool song to give a listen to, it did halt the momentum of the show.

Fortunately, Broken Social Scene was able to pick up the pace almost immediately, finishing with a crowd-pleasing ending as Drew decided against an encore, instead asking his band to play until they had to clear the club.

Powell started this fun night with her own band, Land of Talk. Sounding like a band at the intersection of the Pixies, Lush and Bjork, Land of Talk was equally at home with cacophonous rock and heartfelt lyrics.

For more photos of this show, check out Shaun Flagg’s gallery at Skope Magazine.

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Choice concerts: One I’m finally going to…

I can’t go to every show. Wish I could.

After a couple of misadventures of trying to go to a show, then keep up with my 8 a.m. work schedule, I decided that my days of that insanity were at an end. (Unless, it’s someone really good. And even then, I’d seek the next day off. Like I did earlier this year with My Morning Jacket. I didn’t go to work the next day. I would’ve been in pain.)

But there are times when the right show falls into place. For example, Saturday, when Broken Social Scene heads to Pompano to play Club Cinema. I don’t have to go to work the next day, so I can stay out as long as I want.

(And with enough Starbucks quad-venti nonfat lattes, I can still be coherent enough to have a good conversation with my wife at breakfast. That stuff will cut through the fog off Fisherman’s Wharf.)

BSS' Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning. (Courtesy Wikipedia)
BSS' Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning. (Courtesy Wikipedia)
Broken Social Scene is one of two examples of the Canadian egalitarianism in rock. (The other being New Pornographers.) Kevin Drew, Justin Peroff and Brendan Canning have been in the band the most, but others have made their way into BSS, making this collective a who’s who of Canadian indie rock: Leslie Feist, Metric’s Emily Haines and James Shaw, Stars’ Amy Millan, Torquil Campbell and Evan Cranley, Apostle of Hustle’s Andrew Whiteman, Do Say Make Think’s Charlie Spearin, The Weakerthans’ Jason Tait and the Dears’ Murray Lightburn.

As a result, BSS’ music can be very unpredictable, from instrumental grooves to wildly sonic adventures. And even though the band hasn’t released an album since their 2005 self-titled LP, both Drew’s and Canning’s solo albums have a lot of BSS members involved.

Check out “7/4 (Shoreline)”:

Best show in PBC: Can’t go to Broward for the BSS show? Check out the ultra-cool Papa Mali at Delray’s City Limits on Saturday.

When money is no object: Want to experience the long-awaited release of Guns ‘N’ Roses’ Chinese Democracy in a way I guarantee your friends won’t? Head to Berlin and see if you can get aboard the Berlin Party Bus of Bloodhound Gang bass player Evil Jared on Friday night. I doubt it’ll get any wilder than that.