Brendan Canning Download Guide: “Something For All Of Us”

So he doesn’t have Kevin Drew’s high-profile girlfriend or his name recognition.  And sure, he looks like you’re old pot-smoking high school teacher who’s STILL working on his novel.  But believe you me, as the other founding member of Broken Social Scene, Brendan Canning is a force to be reckoned with.  And if we may say so, he’s just released a wallop-packing album.  So sit back, relax and prepare to get slightly weirded out should you choose to read the sometimes gushing, often incoherent Download Guide that follows.

Review the Download Guide rules if you dare and get a video and mp3 after the jump!

The Download Guide (name possibly still under review) is a simple system to evaluate albums on a song-by-song basis and thus help you in the ongoing mission to fill your iTunes with all killer and little to no filler.  This isn’t exactly a review but a way to help you navigate your way through the a la carte world of MP3s.  You can read our first one here if you want.

Songs are on a grade school, plus/minus system: A, B, C etc.

  1. Something For All Of Us – Title track as opening track?  Such a simple, under-utilized concept and indeed a statement on the broad accessibility of the music.  This is a man who knows how to appeal to listeners with classic-pop sensibilities.  As for the song?  After a distorted instrumental intro it breaks into an off kilter, fuzzy rocker that wouldn’t sound out of place on a Broken Social Scene record.
    Final grade: B
  2. Chameleon – A delicate intro gives way to a flowery tune marked with soft horns and barely there vocals.  The song builds to a brief crescendo before exiting as discreetly as it arrived.  Bottom line, it’s nice, but if I wasn’t forced to give a track-by-track breakdown, I probably wouldn’t have noticed it coming or going.
    Final grade: C+
  3. Hit The Wall – More like ‘hit the face’….with RAWK. A straight xerox of Broken Social Scene’s “Fire Eyed Boy” — that makes two out of three tracks so far that totally cop BSS (not a bad thing) — but this song is too immediate and foot-tappingly great to ignore.  Oh my God, the horns just came in.  My mind is blown all over my computer screen.
    Final grade: A
  4. Snowballs And Icicles – This is a total comedown track from “Hit The Wall.”  Acoustic guitar and some psychedelic flourishes in the background but not much else.  If I was listening to this in the car, I would totally skip past.  It’s nice in the context of the album, but hardly worth your hard-earned download.
    Final grade: C
  5. Churches Under The Stairs – Oh man, oh man, oh man, another stone-cold ROCKER.  Damn you Brendan for this rollercoaster of emotions you call an album!  Falsetto singing, bubbly guitars and handclaps (a.k.a. my kryptonite).
    Final grade: A
    MP3: Brendan Canning – Churches Under The Stairs
  6. Love Is New – What is this?  Ooooh weeeee, that is a funky, nasty bass line!  This is me right now.  Again, horns come in at the end and it builds and builds until I can’t take it anymore.
    Final grade: B+
  7. Antique Bull – Hm, not sure who this is singing.  Some chick.  Who let her in here?  Buuuuut, she can sing pretty nice.  Is this Emily Haines?  Def not Feist.  Someone help me answer this.  Song’s just okay.
    Final grade: C
  8. All The Best Wooden Toys Come From Germany – One thing Broken Social Scene does really well is create songs that make you do a musical double take.  I’m always checking my iTunes as I type to make sure I didn’t miss the start of a new track.  This one is just instrumental though and serves more like a bridge.  All in all, not worth downloading.
    Final grade: C-
  9. Possible Grenade – Ahh, here’s Brendan again.  We missed you!  Apparently he had to take tracks 7 and 8 off to recover from his earlier rock assault.  But he’s back now and he’s brought another fist-pumping anthem with him.  This one’s got a bit of an attitude and if you listen closely, the guitars almost resemble The Cult.  Definitely U2-esque.
    Final grade: A-
  10. Been At It So Long – This is a slow burner.  A nice atmospheric comedown and, what’s this?  There are those BSS horns swooping in again with some angelic background vocals and bells.  Ahhhhhhhh, how peaceful.
    Final grade: B+
  11. Take Care, Look Up – Breathy vocals with some soft instrumentation behind it.  Definitely a closer, but a nice way to go out.
    Final grade: C

Well folks, thanks for checking out our second Download Guide.

Brendan Canning MySpace

Bonus vid time!


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Filed under MP3, Music, Rock, Video

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