Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Noughties By Nature #16: Arcade Fire - Rebellion (Lies)

Funeral provides an interesting bisection in the decade. Before it: New Rock Revolution. After it: Fleet Foxes-fronted inclusive Americana, Modest Mouse and the Shins having US number one albums, the return of, to coin Mike Scott of the Waterboys' phrase, The Big Music. Hearing this some time in the second half of 2004 - it's easily overlooked now that they were as much a blog band as anyone - it was striking just what ambition it had, not to be successful or such trifles but just to take this unerring song that just builds and builds right over the top with its army of staccato piano, driving revving guitars and the odd violin flourish. Win Butler increasingly sounds like a man possessed by nothing more than the idea of "here's the sun/moon, it's alright" in a song about a life through the prism, suggested in Funeral's first half, of childhood as a source of imagination. A song that's bombastic doesn't have to be overblown or overpowering, it just needs to sweep you along.
Simon STN

[Album: Funeral]

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