Music Monday 3.12.07

Arcade_1The new Arcade Fire album, Neon Bible, has exceeded my high expectations.  Metracritic has it at an 86, very high marks indeed.  I knew it would be tough to compare with their excellent debut, Funeral.  And it has a significantly different sound, but oh what a sound it is.  Wonderful.  Packed with religious imagery and pipe organs. 

It's probably the front-runner for 2007 album of the year for me, and I've had it for less than a week! 


On Neon Bible, the band looks outward instead of inward, their concerns more worldly than familial, and their sound more malevolent than cathartic. Angry, embittered, and paranoid, but often generously empathetic in their points of view, they target the government, the church, the military, the entertainment industry, and even the basest instincts of the common man.


"Set my spirit free," Mr. Butler moans....He wonders: How do you fill a spiritual void when you distrust organized religion? How do you escape fearsome times without wallowing in vacant escapism? He doesn’t have any answers and wastes energy on easy targets like MTV. But the shimmering music transforms bleakness into a "vial of hope," and for now that’s enough.

Neon_2 Please take the time to listen to the best track: "My Body is a Cage."  Haunting.  "Windowsill" is available on their MySpace; another great track.  I can't find a good recording of "Intervention" online, but it's a favorite.

Some lyrics...

Working for the church while your life falls apart.
Singing hallelujah with the fear in your heart.
Every spark of friendship and love will die without a home.
Hear the soldier groan, "We'll go at it alone."
Hear the soldier groan, "We'll go at it alone."

I'm living in an age
that calls darkness light.
Though my language is dead
still the shapes fill my head.

I'm living in an age
whose name I don't know
Though the fear keeps me moving,
still my heard beats so slow.

By body is a cage
that keeps me from dancing with the one I love
but my mind holds the key.
(My Body is a Cage)