Believe it or not, it’s been five whole years since Broken Social Scene released an album … sort of. Between then and now, they’ve helped churn out solo records for frontmen Brendan Canning and Kevin Drew, they’ve launched stars (Leslie Feist, we’re looking at you), and they’ve spawned more new projects than anyone else in the game. They’ve also scaled back the BSS army to include just six core songwriters. On Forgiveness Rock Record, the Toronto collective benefits from the downsize, offering up 14 tracks that feel freer, cleaner, and more fluid than much of the band’s beloved back catalogue. Cuts like “Forced to Love” and “Meet Me in the Basement” are less over-the-top theatricality, more straightforward rockouts. (Think The Knack meets Phoenix.) The highlight: Lisa Lobsinger’s turn at the mike for down-tempo beauty “All to All,” which exemplifies everything we love about Broken Social Scene even as it moves the band into uncharted, spacey territory.


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