Kevin Drew (Broken Social Scene) Talks with Claire Rousay on the Talkhouse Podcast

All these people drinking lover's spit...

This week’s Talkhouse Podcast came together in a fun way, when a new-ish artist referenced the work of a more established band in a song, and the head of a legendary indie label thought they should meet. That sounds complicated, but don’t worry I’ll explain. Our guests are Claire Rousay and Kevin Drew.

Kevin Drew is best known as one of the founders of Broken Social Scene, the influential Canadian band slash collective that’s been around for 25 years now. The band has amassed an incredible catalog that broke out with 2002’s unstoppable You Forgot It In People but all of its records reward a deep dive—as does the solo work that Drew has also released over the years. Last year he released a moving record about loss—among other things—called Aging, and as you’ll hear in this conversation, he hopes to reignite Broken Social Scene for one more run that includes some of the collective’s members that have gone on to big careers outside the band, like Leslie Feist and Emily Haines. I personally would love to see it.

I imagine the other half of today’s conversation, Claire Rousay, would as well. The impetus for this conversation is her song “Lover’s Spit Plays in the Background.” In case you’re not familiar with the aforementioned Broken Social Scene album, You Forgot It In People, it features a song called “Lover’s Spit.” Rousay’s song is from her fantastic new album Sentiment, just out on Thrill Jockey Records, on which she leans more into song structure than on past releases, which have been tagged “emo ambient.” Rousay uses found sounds, hazy atmospherics, and Auto-Tune to tell sometimes crushingly depressing stories in a way that somehow turns out gorgeous. Check out “Lover’s Spit Plays in the Background” right here.

This conversation ended up happening because Thrill Jockey’s Bettina Richards reached out to Drew to let him know about the nod on Rousay’s song, and the rest is history: As you’ll hear, they connected pretty quickly, and they chat about blackout curtains, influential record labels, the death of Kevin’s mom, and what Drew dubs Claire’s “beautiful, vulnerable, shadowy womb/sleeping bag of a record.” Enjoy.

0:00 – Intro
2:29 – Start of the chat
4:49 – On Claire’s unusual introduction to Broken Social Scene’s music
9:24 – On music as a lifesaver
13:47 – On the future of Broken Social Scene
17:35 – On being jealous of your peers
21:42 – On blackout curtains
31:27 – On signing to Thrill Jockey
36:46 – On negativity and career expectations

Thanks for listening to the Talkhouse Podcast, and thanks to Claire Rousay and Kevin Drew for chatting. If you liked what you heard, please follow Talkhouse on your favorite podcasting platform, and check out all the goodness at This episode was produced by Myron Kaplan, and the Talkhouse theme is composed and performed by the Range. See you next time!

(Photo Credit: left, Richard Bryant; right, Zoe Donahoe; Edited by: Keenan Kush.)

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