Funerals are absolutely dreadful times for anyone, regardless of the circumstances surrounding them. While mourning is generally the protocol for such an instance, at least one good thing has come out of that situation: Arcade Fire.
This Canadian band consisting of several members, all reportedly met in a series of funerals related to their family members and friends. In these horrible circumstances, the band managed to group together and realised they all had an insatiable taste for music and formed one of the most impressive live acts known today.
Arcade Fire consist of seven members: Win Butler, Regine Chassagne (who are married), Richard Reed Parry, William Butler, Tim Kingsbury, Sarah Neufeld and Jeremy Gara. While this is the current lineup, the bands lineup has changed in between recording albums, as well as expanding during large live performances.
Heralding from Montreal, Canada, this group has approached their musical stylings with an air of grandeur and theatre that is rarely seen in musical performances these days. Each often playing several different instruments as well as all lending their voices to the tracks, Win Butler takes the lead in this inspiring band.
The bands performances are rich with theatrical stage inclusions such as a giant glowing neon bible, dark gothic back drops and the sharp and often executed with high style outfits.
With these fascinating additions to the live performances, the high octane energy put forth by the myriad of musicians creates an atmosphere that is hard to tear yourself away from. The typical instruments are all there, the guitar, the double bass, the drums; but what we also find are piano accordians, electric and traditional violins and many other unconventional instruments.
This is what makes the band what they are today. With their mind blowing mix of instrumentation as well as their incredible theatrical inclusions their sound tends to transcend anything of which you’ve heard before. With calming guitar songs, and stirring pieces including a piano organ, there is no genre to place them within. Each of the musicians claims an incredible amount of talent which definitely adds to the success of the band.
If you’re interested in checking out their sound, make sure you take the time to stop and appreciate the effort and amount of work put into creating such a show.
Their first album, Funeral was released in 2004, with very little commercial release. Fortunately, through this, the band gained a huge name in the underground scene with their consistent performances which always drew a crowd. The album is a great mix of soothing guitar, paired with stirring and often large string arrangements that open your eyes. Each song is fresh and is memorable even days after you’ve listened.
Neon Bible was their follow-up album which gained a little more commercial success. The band, in between recording albums had toured so extensively they’d gained a strong fan-base as well as more experience and ideas for their strong and epic sounds that has become a rarity in todays musically commercial standpoint (which is often too hollow for my tastes)
Since these two fascinating albums the band has been invited to play several big music festivals and large arena type concerts which always draw large crowds due to the hype surrounding their live shows.
Recently, the band released their first live dvd Miroir Noir which features a large amount of footage from their Neon Bible tour. Through this, the film has been shot with a great amount of detail which gives fans a great opportunity to not only indulge in a great music style, but catch some footage they may have missed.
Arcade Fire are a band definitely worth checking out if you’re interested in expanding your musical horizons. Their sounds are different, their effort is accolade worthy, and their theatrical performance will keep you fascinated for hours.