everything's in place. it's on.
Those nutty heartfelt scamps from the Broken Social Scene crew have done it yet again. Besides creating one of last year's most incredible albums with their sophomore effort You Forgot It In People, the members of the Canadian indie pop collective have kept themselves busy with their own (some might call them "side") projects like Metric, Stars & Feist. There are so many BSS offshoots, they even have their own family tree.
Guitarist Andrew Whiteman throws his hat into the ring with his group Apostle of Hustle & their debut record Folkloric Feel, which was recently released through BSS's Arts & Crafts label. The disc features guest turns from BSS regulars Brendan Canning, Kevin Drew, Leslie Feist and Evan Cranley, as well as Amy Milan of Stars to complement Whiteman & his other bandmates, drummer Dean Stone and bassist Julian Brown. You can read more about how AoH came together here or at their website, where you can also stream the whole album (via flash).
The album's title track is a doozy. Clocking in at nearly eight minutes, the mostly instrumental lead-off song covers a lot of territory. It begins with a sniff, and a few random plucks of guitar strings before Whiteman begins to strum a simple, intensifying tune. We hear "folkloric feel" & the drums kick in, launching us into the kind of layered, atmospheric pop you might hear on the back half of You Forgot It In People. From there the song shifts into a groove reminicent of parts of "Stars & Sons" or "Cause=Time" (from the aforementioned BSS album) with some random lyrics about "6/8 time" added in passing, as if the song is being worked out right before your ears. But it's really, really good. And suddenly, you're smiling. The song slows down again, as Whiteman repeats the phrase, "Everything's in place. It's on." It may be a little cheesy, but it's still a helluva way to start an album.
in the rhythm of this song
we drink, we fu** & we fight, we bring it on
Now that's a kick ass opening line for a song. "Energy of Death" is probably the most upbeat number on Folkloric Feel, and not suprisingly it has several BSS members chipping in (notice Cranley's trombone work somewhere in the dense pop bliss). The lyrics may get a tad bit preachy at times ("the children of the dying earth, our possessions & our money have no worth"), but I'm too busy rocking out to get jaded & really care. This is the album's fourth track, and by the time I finished it, I was sold on the rest.
In other BSS news, the band recently finished a score for The Love Crimes of Gillian Guess, a new film by Bruce McDonald. They are heading back into the studio to work on their follow-up to You Forgot It In People, which they are currently calling Windsurfing Nation & hope to release on Valentine's Day 2005. Feist's latest album Let It Die still needs an American release, though you can get it through Arts & Crafts (like I did). Stars will have their follow-up to last year's lovely Heart out October 12, entitled Set Yourself on Fire. Lastly, if you have any trouble finding the AoH cd in stores, it's also available for purchase & download through the iTunes music store.
bypassing my hometownLeft of the Dial tipped me off to the fall tour dates for indie rocker Ted Leo & his band the Pharmacists. Guess what? They're skipping Mpls again. Urgh. The lucky folks up at UMD will get to see him instead.
Also not bothering to stop by are NYC's favorite gypsy punks Gogol Bordello, who also just released new fall tour dates. Check them out if they're coming to your town - they threw down my favorite show of the year thus far. You will be hard-pressed to find a better time out at a rock club, folks.
BTW: Happy b-day, JRDN! See you tonite @ Psycho Suzi's post-Killers.