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Broken Social Scene

Forgiveness Rock Record (Arts & Crafts)

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BSS at the core is a dual beast. Underneath its swollen membership tally and philosophical manifesto that promotes free will, universal love and respect, there is a finely tuned and thoughtful process to its music-making. All is not as chaotic as it seems---with nine to 31 members, there has to be some structure, or else the result is like its dense and swollen last album. Thankfully Forgiveness Rock Record is a vastly superior beast. There are signature BSS songs (“World Sick,” “Forced to Love”) written to elate and elevate. But they are interspersed among tracks that embrace freedom and those tender in-between spaces (“All in All,” “Highway Slipper Jam,” “Sentimental X”). Perhaps even more so than You Forgot It in People has a Broken Social Scene album embodied its “collective” ideology, building a record that’s greater than the sum of its parts.

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