7. Arcade Fire – “Funeral”

This is certainly a rousing effort from the Montrealers. Loads of instruments, layers of sounds, swirling vocals. And it all comes together pretty effectively, as they sustain the intensity and the beauty throughout.

arcade_fire__funeralThe most impressive thing about this album, is the extent to which as a listener I feel I have pinned down their “sound” (e.g. “Ahh, it’s a Pixies for 2000s”), only to find them surprising me in the next moment with a stunning shift in direction.

This is unashamed “art rock”, with loads of strings, and soaring vocals and percussion. But, it does manage to come off as not toooo pretentious. There is a clear grasp of the emotional side of all this. Good old fashioned “walls of sound” win out on a number of tracks.

On all accounts, these guys are astounding live. That’s easy to imagine as recreating this sound (and adding some spontaniety) would be truly impressive. The music is so well-suited to the live arena. Feeling it wash over you must be quite primal. I was too lazy to get tickets to see them when they hit Melbourne in 2008. Next time I’ll be more on the ball.

File under: Arty smarties.

3 responses to “7. Arcade Fire – “Funeral”

  1. At first listen this album became an instant classic. Pompously ambitious but delivering on every track. Part of me still longs for the days when people used to say “Arcade Who?”, but when a band is this good they deserve a wider audience. I highly recommend seeing them live, and also picking up Neon Bible, an equally impressive release.

  2. I can’t tell you how much I love this album. I came to Arcade Fire late in the game (I think a full 12 months or more after this was released) and it still blows me away.

    Yes you have to see them live. One of the best concerts of 2008 (it would easily have been the best concert of last year but there was stiff competition from Bjork and Sufjan Stevens among many others).

  3. One of my favourite albums. Just saw them in concert 2 nights ago – truly awesome!

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