Thursday, May 15, 2008

Broken Social Scene: Elysee-Montmartre, Paris 14 May 2008

I've seen Broken Social Scene a number of times over the years, most notably a brilliant show at Vicar St back in 2006. Excellent live band and while last night had some fantastic moments, it never really reached the heights the band are capable of. The whole thing just seemed a bit off at times and I don't think the concert was paced in the right way. There were some great songs followed by songs that slowed the whole pace again. It was all a bit up and down.

'Anthems' was good but again was just off a bit I thought (great to see Amy Millan out with them tonight). 'Superconnected' and 'It's All Gonna Break' were great though. And they played a new song near the start (not sure of the name) and for me, that was the best song of the night. Loved it. I've always thought that if BSS cut out some of the longer instrumentals and streamlined their music a bit more they could be a lot better. This is what this song did. I know one of the best things about the band is their musical exploration if you like, but last night it just came across as indulgent. There was no need for some of the stuff played and if they had cut the songs down, I think it would have been great. They have the songs, Kevin's voice was as good as ever and the band are all excellent musicians. Some songs, like the new one, are songs worthy of the biggest stages.

I'm hoping they'll get together and record a new Broken Social Scene album soon. I wasn't overly keen on Kevin's album from last year and while 'Hit The Wall' from Brendan's upcoming album was great, I think the concert gets a bit confused with all the different music styles. It's nearly three years since the last one so I think a new album is needed.

Must also be pointed out that the crowd wasn't great lat night. Could be for a number of reasons: Paris crowds aren't always the most responsive, people didn't seem to know a lot of the songs past the big ones (this was their biggest show in Paris to date so probably a lot of newcomers to the band) and also it was absolutely boiling in the venue which didn't help anything.
So all in all, a good concert from a band who can do so much more.

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