Everyone loves Arcade Fire for more than just their music. There are always those descriptions of bands whose fans go on about how good the artists' music is along with the AND... That big AND that is the aspect setting the band you love apart from all others. Having seen Arcade Fire on Friday down in DC at DAR Constitution Hall and again last night up at United Palace Theatre the list of reasons for loving this band now includes their incredible live show. I will admit, i have not read many interviews with them- i guess a bit of me likes them to stay the mystical band that they are- i don't want to know all of their secrets. Both of their albums weave such richly taut stories that evoked so much emotion for me that i wouldn't want to find out something to make me change my mind. Growing up my dad fed our family musically with Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Woodie Guthrie, old labor union songs, and Simon and Garfunkel re-telling stories of his days of protests and college youth. Back in those days he said people used to sit around and listen to these artists because they were angry, because they wanted to feel something and be united- to become a community who wanted to make a difference. For me, this feeling comes across for the first time in my generation of music with Arcade Fire in such a way that it made me proud to tout the album about to my Dad. Which is saying a lot. Enough about me and why i love them- for it is their music that is deserving of the attention and this article.
Their live show is so unique because of this sense of community between every band member on stage. They are so in touch with each other even though it looks like a spastic theatrical performance. Regine with her robotic dance moves, Win climbing into the audience, Sarah playing violin like you wish everyone would, Jeremy pounding on the drums like he is working out some secret aggression, Will, Richard, Tim, Alexander...all switching up instruments between the tambourine, the bass, guitar, organ, anything and everything on stage.
These are artists- this is music. This is why people should buy records, pick up magazines, attend shows and share with their friends. This overwhelmingly talented band, this incredible sense of community. They are incredibly brave, every artist is in their own right- to get on stage and perform for us, especially us New York concert goers. But well, we all know the story of their beginnings, of the obsticales they had to overcome and then the words that they sing- that they have the courage to say. With this new album it is clear how they feel about this war, our war, how they feel about this country, how they feel about 'our' president and well- i always fall for that. So then you see them live and everyone is singing along and clapping and it makes you feel like this scene, this spirit must have been what it was like back in the 60's a bit- as much as anything could be nowadays. Messages of love, anger, hope- and they deliver it in a way that makes everyone in Canada proud to call this band theirs and gives everyone in America a huge reason to be jealous and a reason to cling to survival as a community-at least until another one of their albums comes out.
BrooklynVegan has some lovely shots of last night and a complete setlist as well as some selections from The National- who were EXCELLENT-definitely make it there early!
ProductshopNYC was there as well & at Beirut!
The Well And The Lighthouse.mp3