March 6, 2007

IT'S THE FEEL GOOD ALBUM OF THE YEAR!:

Arcade Fire: ecstacy amid the agony (Joan Anderman, March 6, 2007, Boston Globe)

Two years ago the Arcade Fire staged an indie-rock circus here at the Roxy: There were violins, xylophones, and tambourines, a disco ball and natty suit jackets, a pair of plastic calves lashed to the drum kit, and a festive parade through the nightclub. The Montreal-based band was playing songs from its first album, 2004's "Funeral," an elegy inspired by the deaths of several family members that redefined catharsis for the MySpace generation.

How the band found its way to such strange, joyous music in the face of desolation and despair is a mystery. And if the mystery doesn't exactly deepen on "Neon Bible," the band's new album (in stores today) hews to the same wild possibility that the only lucid response to agony is bold, tuneful ecstasy.

The Arcade Fire's lyrics are abstract, but the album's message is clear: Modern life is a soul-sucking nightmare. The water is deep, cold, and rising fast. The apocalypse is coming. Bonds of faith and community that offered comfort on "Funeral" have evaporated, replaced by a cosmic void. "Every spark of friendship and love/ Will die without a home/ Hear the soldier groan, 'We'll go at it alone,' " sings Win Butler on "Intervention. " In a less remarkable band's hands, the soundtrack to such miserable tidings would be bleak. Butler and RĂ©gine Chassagne, the Arcade Fire's married masterminds, crank up the hurdy-gurdys and slather on the celestial bells, making "Intervention" one of the most uplifting rock songs in recent memory.


The Arcade Fire Live (NPR All Songs Considered)
The Arcade Fire's 2004 debut Funeral, was one of the decade's most remarkable rock albums. Now on the eve of releasing Neon Bible, their highly anticipated follow-up, the band performed at New York's Judson Memorial Church, originally webcast live on NPR.org Feb. 17, 2007
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Posted by Orrin Judd at March 6, 2007 12:00 AM
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interesting

Posted by: Gustas at April 17, 2007 11:30 AM
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