Words by Robyn Rubinstein

The Arcade Fire :: Vegoose 2005
By Jeffrey V. Smith
The Arcade Fire is Win Butler, RĂ©gine Chassagne, Richard Reed Parry, William Butler, Tim Kingsbury, Sarah Neufeld, and Jeremy Garaan. This octet from Montreal wins Rubi's "Best New Find of the Weekend" Award. Their sound can best be described as an emo-indie rock adrenaline shot to the system. I had never heard them before (though now I recognize "Cold Wind" from Six Feet Under) and merely had a recommendation from a reputable source to check them out. It was a powerful experience. Each song was like a half-scale performance art piece in its intensity, visceral content, and mild musicial theatrics. The instrumentation was diverse and eclectic, containing (but not limited to) guitar, drums, bass guitar, acoustic and electric keyboards, violin, viola, xylophone, and accordion. The players switched instruments with ease and dexterity. It felt as if they were channeling early Talking Heads into a musical pocket where it was safe to be emotionally bare. It was comforting, intriguing, and a raging dance party all at once. "Crown of Love" almost brought me to the point of tears before it erupted into a pounding dance beat that became a cathartic release for emotional build-up. The Arcade Fire now sits atop my list of bands to see again.

[Published on: 11/16/05]

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