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The new Arcade Fire album will be called 'Neon Bible'


anewman
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Green Gartside of Scritti Politti had this lot figured out way back in 2007:

 

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People who enjoy this album may think I’m cloth-eared and unperceptive, and I accept it’s the result of my personal shortcomings, but what I hear in Arcade Fire is an agglomeration of mannerisms, cliches and devices. I find it solidly unattractive, texturally nasty, a bit harmonically and melodically dull, bombastic and melodramatic, and the rhythms are pedestrian. It’s monotonous in its textures and in the old-fashioned, nasty, clunky 80s rhythms and eighth-note basslines. It isn’t, as people are suggesting, richly rewarding and inventive. The melodies stick too closely to the chord changes. Win Butler’s voice uses certain stylistic devices – it goes wobbly and shouty, then whispery – and I guess people like wobbly and shouty going to whispery, they think it signifies real feeling. It’s some people’s idea of unmediated emotion. I can imagine Jeremy Clarkson liking it; it’s for people in cars. It’s rather flat and unlovely. The album and the response to it represent a bunch of beliefs about expression and truth that I don’t share. The battle against unreconstructed rock music continues.

 

 

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4 minutes ago, Quest said:

Green Gartside of Scritti Politti had this lot figured out way back in 2007:

 

 

 

That passage is hilarious. He's basically saying "This is just my opinion and I'm probably talking rubbish, but I think Arcade Fire make shit music for arseholes". What a load of twaddle!

 

Anyway, I guess I misjudged the perception of the band here. :ph34r: I absolutely loved their first three albums. I think I first noticed them after hearing Intervention, devoured their first two albums and the EP before seeing them live for an amazing gig in Cardiff. The Suburbs didn't disappoint either, and I saw them a second time for their tour for that. If the new album can capture any of what made those albums so good then I can't wait.

 

But whatever. I'm long past caring what people think about my taste in music. :D

 

*Puts The Lightning on again*

 

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That quote illustrates the difficulty of being specific when criticising music, because you can't really get a sense of why it's bad beyond him disapproving of the kind of people who like it. His voice goes from being wobbly and shouty to being whispery? What an amateur, everybody knows you don't go from being wobbly and shouty to being whispery, it's the first thing they teach you at anarchist synth-pop reggae-influenced music school.

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1 hour ago, K said:

you can't really get a sense of why it's bad beyond him disapproving of the kind of people who like it.

 

This is pretty much the only worthwhile form of music commentary, to be fair. 

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9 hours ago, Marlowe said:

I'd be more surprised @Loik V credern if you did like a new album by a big 90s/00s band. I can't remember the last thing you posted positively about in this folder!

 

You're way off about Arcade Fire. Funeral is formidable and has an emotional power few albums can match, but Neon Bible and The Suburbs are both excellent albums in their own right as well which evolve the AF sound in interesting ways and are very distinctive thematically. So many highlights: Keep the Car Running, Intervention, Windowsill, Antichrist Television Blues, Modern Man, City With No Children, Wasted Hours, We Used To Wait, Sprawl II.

 

I haven't enjoyed their records since then, but 3 classic albums in a row is a feat that few bands emulate.

 

I just think most music is shit really, it's a problem I seem to have because for me there are vast vast chasms of difference in quality between the good stuff and everything else, and for others that's not the way it is. It's boring I know, I bore myself, I'm sorry, but bad art in general bothers me, it's been a constant theme throughout my time posting on the internet really. Someone once said 'I moan about everything' and I was taken aback, I thought I was just being critical and trying to unpeel what I like and don't like. 

 

As tedious as it, I don't see the point in liking everything because then it's like the genuinely stuff has no meaning. So when I like something I really like it. Also because it's probably that I want music to be intense and emotional and so little is. I think there's genuinely few who live and breathe it, I think there's so many who just adopt and pretend. 

 

I don't think I'm hard to please, I really don't. Don't be boring or dull. Or annoying. Try to be emotionally intense and raw, try to make it seem like you were playing when you created something so you didn't know what the outcome would be, so that it's evident you stumbled on to sounds. Like Modern Guilt by Beck, I really like that album, it's not my favourite music ever, he's not near my favourite artist but even now I still think it sounds relatively fresh, none of it sounds like he was going through the motions and for someone who had made loads of albums by then it shows he isn't pretending with it, he's just quality. 

 

Also my post was about Arcade Fire's follow up being good? Although 'good' undersells it, I don’t think it's lesser at all really. It's certainly not a disappointment now, I meant to put up My Heart Is a Cage because it's a great example of them producing something near their peak but it kind of going unappreciated. 

 

Like with Fleet Foxes, their follow up is great, it's not lesser. And I like Mgmt's follow up! Not many seem to. 

 

The Suburbs is just painfully dull to me. I know people like it and I guess I'll try again. 

 

The only new band I've listened to in the last few years who are alright are black midi. I'm sure there's more but with the everyone liking seemingly everything and not recognising big differences in quality in music thing, it's not even worth copying and pasting a band name or artist into YouTube anymore. I recently filled up my music player with stuff, 80s pop music which I can't stand, I am open to other stuff that's passable. Or Wet Leg, they're fine. 

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All music reviews are pointless really. I like needledrop as a person, on other stuff I pretty much always agree with him, and music mostly too, but music reviews don't mean anything to me. I love Animal Collective and don't like the new album. I don’t know why, I still haven't figured it out. Maybe I just like simple blunt stuff and when a sound matures and becomes more complex it loses an immediacy.

 

Anyway..point is despite being a big fan of AC and this album being years after the previous one, after listening to it and being underwhelmed there was no desire to read or listen to a review of it. It's the complete opposite of a film where I am eager to read or hear others impressions, whatever the film. 

 

I think music is probably just great to create. Great to put on and give you energy, great to satisfy some need sometimes. But..I'm not a proper music fan who appreciates all sounds and could begin to describe them as reviewers like needledrop does. 

 

Arcade Fire have always been accused of being sanctimonious and earnest, but that gave them conviction, like their music truly meant something to them, and I'd take that over them merely having fun but doing it in a passable bland way. 

 

People seem to hate Coldplay but I hear so much passable stuff that's not that different really that's highly rated by people. I never get that. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I really like the new album. It reminds me, weirdly, of Halo: ODST. A sort of all new "Greatest Hits" package that gives you something you like regardless of why you like them and then immediately moves onto the next thing. As a result of this there's a couple of tracks I'm not as mad on as the rest of it but it's the closest thing we've had to a really great Arcade Fire album since The Suburbs, which is such a viscerally important album to me, so I'm happy! 

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I need to listen to it more, but after my first listen I didn't think much of it in the end. It was definitely much better than Everything Now, but nothing reached out and grabbed me like the songs on their first three albums.

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I'm trying to pretend the last two albums didn't happen, and that this is a long-awaited follow-up from a band that hasn't released anything since The Suburbs.

 

I think it might be a grower, but it hasn't helped that it came out on the same day as the new album from Belle & Sebastian which has grabbed me a lot more quickly and is getting much more playtime.

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