2 August 2013

2nd August - Arcade Fire's The Suburbs

Artist – Album: Arcade Fire – The Suburbs
Released:  2nd August 2010
Sounds Like: The sound of The Suburbs

The Arcade Fire’s very own Win Butler described the sound of this album as “a mix of Depeche Mode and Neil Young”, a comparison which should give some measure of the maturity, if slightly jaded approach, to the music on The Suburbs.

For the record, there’s a lot more of Neil Young in this (plaintive vocals, baroque arrangements, conceptual theme, and confessional lyrics) than Depeche Mode (ambition, a mild electro-pop/AOR bent), but this is far more than a tribute album. Whilst the emphatic ‘Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)’ can’t help but conjure up images of Blondie circa ‘Heart of Glass’, ‘The Suburbs’ is jauntily Kinks-esque and ‘Empty Room’ sounds uncannily like it could break into a cover of ‘French Disko’ by Stereolab at any time, the majority of the album is unquestionably Arcade Fire-like. ‘Ready to Start’ is probably the best example, a souped-up version of Funeral’s ‘Rebellion (Lies)’, complete with the grand, barked chorus, and ascending coda.

Each of the Canadian outfits’ albums have been exceptional; each with its own theme and a high level of consistency that never falters. Funeral had more anthems, and Neon Bible more than its fair share of woes, but I get the feeling that this is the one that could ultimately be seen as their masterpiece.

Albumaday... rating: 10/10

1.       The Suburbs – 5:15
2.       Ready to Start – 4:15
3.       Modern Man – 4:39
4.       Rococo – 3:56
5.       Empty Room – 2:51
6.       City with No Children – 3:11
7.       Half Light I – 4:13
8.       Half Light II (No Celebration) – 4:25
9.       Suburban War – 4:45
10.   Month of May – 3:50
11.   Wasted Hours – 3:20
12.   Deep Blue – 4:28
13.   We Used to Wait – 5:01
14.   Sprawl I (Flatland) – 2:54
15.   Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) – 5:25
16.   The Suburbs (continued) – 1:27

Listen to ‘Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awHWColYQ90

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