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Not what you might have expected from Arcade Fire...at first...,
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Reflektor (Audio CD)
As a relative newcomer to AF, I was thrilled to hear that a new album would be coming out. I started with The Suburbs and Funeral, then Neon Bible. I loved Suburbs and marvelled at the emotion of Funeral (Neighborhoods #1 & 3 being personal favourites). Then I heard the Reflektor single. Um, ok, so funky stuff. But, as one press review said, it continuously feels relevant, with not a wasted second. Fine. I agree. Then I saw the Here Comes The Night Time film. And thought "Oh my. This is NOT the Arcade Fire I discovered." I bought the album anyway, in the hope that I would be wrong. I was.
Of course, there is little of the raw, powerful emotion of Funeral here. The pomp of Neon Bible is missing too. But of The Suburbs there is more than a trace. Yes, there are more keyboards on here, but this is definitely Arcade Fire. There are amazingly good tunes, excellent musicianship and it's a great listen (I particularly like Disc 2, which is probably the more AF-like of the two). Is it overblown? Yes, of course, it's Arcade Fire, which is what we like about them, don't we? Yes, they have gone with a few too many gimmicks - cut out the hidden track BEFORE Reflektor and the ambient stuff at the end of Supersymmetry (which would work perfectly on its own) and you've reduced the album by 16 minutes, which would have silenced detractors at a stroke.
And what of the songs? Well, no need to say anything about the title track, which is a real romp (with David Bowie on backing vocals). Other highlights (for me) are a Jackson-esque song on "We Exist", the wild mix of "Here Comes The Night Time" (which has grown on me), the AF of old in the Greek duo of "Awful Sound"/"It's Never Over" (particularly the latter), the great rocker "Afterlife" and the 'just before the lights go out for the night' song "Supersymmetry".
As I have said, it could have been shorter and a single album simply by chopping of the ambient stuff (heck, if I hadn't read Wiki, I wouldn't have guessed that there were ten minutes of music/sound BEFORE Reflektor started), but otherwise, it's a tight, modern band, playing really GREAT music. If you liked The Suburbs, you'll love this one too.