Live: Broken Social Scene / Ólafur Arnalds

I’ve been stupidly busy recently so I apologize for it being all quiet on the blogging front recently. I’m going to try and make it up to you now with two posts in one day. “Oooooooooohh!” can I hear you say? Well you better believe it. Here goes…

Broken Social Scene – Manchester Academy

Broken Social Scene have always been one of those bands that, despite being on my radar, I haven’t really been inspired to see live before. Fortunately a ticket landed on my lap, and it being a rather typically grim Monday evening in Manchester, I thought I should go along and see what all the fuss was about.

The rain was falling, it was a dreary Monday evening, Brazil were playing on the TV and yet half of Manchester’s music community seemed to be at this show. This is, I feel, testament to the fact that Manchester really is still at the centre of the world when it comes to an interest in good music. The band were feeding off this energy and the buzz around the room was infectious. Broken Social Scene played an absolute blinder – a perfect mix of old material, new material, upbeat rock ‘n roll and heart warming ballads. Sounds went from Tom Petty- style country rock, through to Wilco influenced indie folk-rock-electronica and the percussive eastern influenced progression often associated with bands like Beirut. Guest vocals and brilliant instrumental sections rounded this off, and after well over 2 hours of solid music, and with no regard to silly things like curfews, everyone (including the band) was left wanting more. It was one of those magical moments where you just know it could have gone on all night if it were possible.

For an ‘on the fence’ semi-fan such as myself, this was probably about as good as it gets as an introduction to a live music experience. I have always ‘quite liked’ BSS’ records, but have never been blown away to the extent I know other people have. I came away from the show refreshed, and comfortable in the knowledge that the Broken Social Scene live experience is about a million times better than the Broken Social Scene record listening one.

A big shout out and much love goes to Guitar Dean for inviting me along to this.


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