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recommended boston area events

tuesday, december 4th

kelly hogan

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 6th

conor oberst

@ converse hall, tremont st.

thursday, december 6th

jason isbell &

the 400 unit

@ the sinclair

friday, december 7th

the weisstronauts 14th

annual holiday jubilee

with guests tsunami of sound

preacher jack, & the derangers

@ the midway cafe, jp

friday, december 7th


moving mountains


@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

patrick watson

@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

the faint perform

"danse macabre"


icky blossoms

@ the paradise

sunday, december 9th

band of horses

@ house of blues

sunday, december 9th



@ the paradise

wednesday, december 12th

concrete blonde

jim bianco

@ the sinclair

thursday, december 13th

annual boston christmas cavalcade

benefit for the homeless

featuring tons of artists

(see fb event for details)

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 13th

nada surf

eternal summers

@ the paradise

thursday, december 13th

mates of state

in the valley below

@ brighton music hall

friday, december 14th

forgetters (blake from

jawbreaker's band)

& more tba

@ democracy center, harvard square

sunday, december 30th

sufjan stevens

sheila saputo

@ the royale

monday, december 31st

my morning jacket

@ agganis arena

monday, december 31st

deer tick

two gallants

@ the sinclair

monday, january 7th


@ the paradise

tuesday, january 8th


@ great scott

saturday, january 19th

mission of burma

@ the sinclair

sunday, january 20th

camper van beethoven


@ the middle east down

sunday, january 20th


@ the orpheum

sunday, january 20th

ra ra riot

@ the paradise

sunday, january 27th


@ great scott

tuesday, january 29th

kathleen edwards

sera cahoone

@ brighton music hall

wednesday, february 13th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

saturday, march 2nd

unknown mortal orchestra

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 12th

tame impala

@ house of blues

thursday, march 14th

jukebox the ghost

matt pond pa

lighthouse and the whaler

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 26th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

wednesday & thursday

april 3rd & 4th

they might be giants

@ the paradise

visit tourfilter for more shows

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Kevin Drew + Broken Social Scene Played Boston

Well, technically, they played Cambridge. TT the Bears, to be exact...

Last night's free, full-capacity, MySpace-sponsored "secret" show was an absolute sweaty blast, and marked the debut of the new incarnation of Broken Social Scene, which includes mainstays Kevin Drew, Brendan Canning, and drummer Justin Peroff, along with three new faces: Andrew Kenny (of the dearly departed American Analog Set), Sam Goldberg (Hawaii, Uncut, Bodega), and Bill Priddle (who is actually a now-returned founding BSS member). The band will be touring off and on through December, and playing mostly songs off Kevin's soon-to-be-out solo album, "Spirit If...". But make no mistake, even with just a couple old BSS faves in the setlist, and despite the lack of female vocals, strings, or horns, this was a Broken Social Scene show through and through. The energy, the three-guitar goodness, the all-out catchiness of the new songs, have no fear. BSS fans can rejoice, because they are back.

Sam Goldberg, Brendan Canning, & Kevin Drew of BSS

TTs started handing out the bright pink wristbands for the show just before 2pm that afternoon, and within a couple hours all 300+ were gone. The steady queue wrapped around the block and into a nearby construction area, and as we waited, a van pulled up, Kevin jumped out, and immediately start doling out high-fives to every fan in line...

Kevin Drew hi-fives the fans

Ryan Walsh from Hallelujah the Hills really was the perfect opener (which made sense, as he was personally picked by BSS), playing stripped-down HtH songs through an amplified and sometimes pedal-fied acoustic guitar. No mellow singer/songwriter was he, as the songs kept the urgency and energy of their recorded versions, and Ryan kept the eager crowd's attention throughout. Afterwards, I heard more than a few new fans comment on his performance while waiting for Kevin & co. to hit the stage. It was a pretty special gig to be invited to play, and he made the most of it, showing off those songs, and solidifying HtH's spot as my favorite Boston-based band at the moment. Buy their excellent Misra Records debut disc here.

Ryan Walsh of Hallelujah the Hills

Before I comment on my personal BSS highlights, for the curious, here's what they played. I'll say this though: If you plan on seeing the band soon, look away, as I know you'll appreciate the set-ending surprises...

Broken Social Scene
playing Kevin Drew's "Spirit If..."
Tuesday, August 28th, 2007
TT the Bears, Cambridge, MA

01. Lucky Ones
02. Safety Bricks
03. F-ked Up Kids
04. Tbtf
05. Back Out On The...
06. Hit the Wall (a Brendan Canning song)
07. Farewell to the Pressure Kids
08. Broke Me Up
09. Bodhi Sappy Weekend
10. Frightening Lives
11. Superconnected (BSS)
12. Canada vs. America (BSS)
13. Lover's Spit (BSS)
14. Major Label Debut (BSS)

Sam Goldberg, Andrew Kenny, Kevin Drew, & Bill Piddle of BSS

Highlights: "Safety Bricks" (which Kevin called 'a responsible song'), and Andrew Kenny's keyboard work throughout the whole set, especially on that one; Brendan Canning's new song, "Hit the Wall", (which will supposedly be the single off his own upcoming "Broken Social Scene presents..." solo album, out in early 2008) made me eager to hear more of his own stuff; Kevin's random John Legend / R. Kelly / the Secret ramble; seeing Kevin's smiling, birthday-celebrating brother watching the band rock out on "Superconnected" from the side of the stage; Kevin asking how many in the crowd had already downloaded the leaked version of his album (answer: a bunch); Kevin handing out sage advice like "call your parents" and "go look at a tree"; "Bodhi Sappy Weekend", which is sure to be a beautiful highlight of "Spirit If..."; The dynamic "Farewell to the Pressure Kids", which will be the album's first single. Seeing Andrew pick up a guitar and head to the mic for the last song; And, of course, those four BSS numbers that finished up the set.

Andrew Kenny & Kevin Drew of BSS

Kevin requested that I not share my recording of the performance, and of course I'll honor that... totally understandable since the album isn't even out yet. The new songs should first be heard how he wants them to be heard, y'know? But I'm sending him a copy, and maybe he'll be cool with sharing some songs later on. We'll see.

Keep an eye on the current list of tour dates to make sure you can catch Kevin & Broken Social Scene on the road this fall. They play tonight at McCarren Park Pool in Brooklyn, then head overseas through October, until I assume they return to North America for dates through December.

To bide time until "Spirit If..." arrives on September 18th from Arts & Crafts, here's what's been made available so far...
  • The song "Tbtf" can be downloaded at Kevin's A&C page, and on his MySpace page, where you can also stream "Back Out On The..." and the non-album track "Cocaine Skin".

  • P4K premiered the video (which is essentially a filmed party with Kevin, Brendan, Dinosaur Jr., and many others) for "Backed Out On The..." back in late July.
  • A footnote: I talked a bit with Andrew Kenny, and he's got a lot of new songs, and a new band to perform them, in the works. Demos are down, studio time is planned after all this BSS touring, and he's playing bass this time around ("If I played guitar, it'd end up sounding exactly like American Analog Set"). It'd be an understatement for me to say that this news is the good kind.

    featured mp3 download
    neil halstead
    live in cambridge, ma
    on november 14th, 2008
    previously: joy formidable - boston 2011

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