Features Reviews

VFTA: Broken Social Scene Part 1 – "Feel Good Lost"

Not sure what this VFTA malarkey is all about? See here.
To listen along with Ben, BSS’ “Feel Good Lost” is on Spotify.

The year 2000; the start of the new millennium, but more importantly the birth of new ideas, perspectives and emotions.

Around the same time as the world welcomed in this new decade, a fresh sound was growing from the suburban basements, and urban meadows of America and Canada. A sound that projected pure poetry and delicate lyrical narratives, set to beautifully crafted instrumental dream states. Circa 2000, the pioneers of this ‘post-rockesque’ styling included bands such as Bright Eyes, The Shins and Death Cab For Cutie, all of which continue to evolve and develop this glorious sound 10 years on. But one group who appear to have nurtured the genre throughout the decade, and are still exploring it to this day, are Broken Social Scene.

Formed in Canada in 1999, Broken Social Scene originally existed as a mix of collaborators, musicians and friends who blended an array of musical projects and ideas together. After two years of fine tuning, founding members Brendan Canning and Kevin Drew wrote the band’s debut album “Feel Good Lost”; a myriad of moods and tones that truly paints a picture of the mass artist collective present and the new millennium perspective.

“Feel Good Lost” is apt as a debut as it consists mostly of instrumental stylings, and in many ways acts as introduction to the band’s avant-garde direction. The moods contained in the album rise and fall and a series of emotions, and dreams are explored in intimate detail. ‘Alive In 85’ capturing a rather more jovial mood setting with muffled yet busy tempo, and gently wafting guitar melodies. Whereas, ‘Stomach Song’ represents a more claustrophobic, enclosed atmosphere, with its murky orchestration and eerie collection of vocal clips looped over and over throughout. The collection of work here tends to float along sweetly, culminating in the heavy ‘Last Place’, that acts as the awakening from the troubled, yet peaceful dream of the album.

As “Feel Good Lost” reaches it’s optimistic closing track ‘Cranley’s Gonna Make It’, one can’t help but agree with the album’s title; that it has felt good being lifted out of the harshness of real life, and left alone to wonder in this pure dream state. Admittedly, Broken Social Scene’s debut isn’t one of strength or power. But what it does hold is potential, promise and the odd sense of escapism that exists so beautifully in the music of all those visionary band’s way back in 2000.

The Year 2000: That start of the great escape!

Ben Hawling