Broken Social Scene

You Forget It in People

My first encounter with Broken Social Scene’s You Forget It in People engaged me no less than those musical milestones (Jesus and Mary Chain, Pavement, Sonic Youth) that forever altered my perspective and tastes. BSS shares the rare literary melancholy exemplified by Radiohead, The Smiths, and Belle and Sebastian. “Stars and Sons” and “Cause = Time” are two similarly linear songs, tensions subsisting on scaffolds supporting a continual ever-escalating addition of instruments and atmospheric noise. The album’s poetic summit yields “Lover’s Spit” (“All these people drinking lover’s spit / Sit around and clean their face with it”). The song’s lyrics almost shouldn’t work, yet with its defeated vocals and careful orchestration, the concept of a partner’s bodily fluids offering a baptismal and redemptive hope becomes an elegant act of grace and acquiescence.