Thursday, February 17, 2011

Who is Arcade Fire?

Fans of popular music can be annoying.

Case in point: Arcade Fire.

They released their first album back in 2004 to critical acclaim, but I didn't stumble upon them until the masterpiece that is Neon Bible in 2007. It is seriously one of the most unique albums ever, and they are one of the most artistic bands around. The band got its start in Quebec, Canada and consists of the husband and wife duo of Win and Haitian-tied RĂ©gine, along with Will Butler, Richard Reed Parry, Tim Kingsbury, Jeremy Gara, and Sarah Neufeld. This is what I love about the band: multi-instrumentalist band members. And they switch instruments during a concert as the songs permit.

The band uses a myriad of instruments: guitars, drums, bass guitar, piano, violin, viola, cello, double bass, xylophone, glockenspiel, keyboard, concertina, panpipes, omnichord, percussion, synth, recorders, celesta, organ, French horn, accordion, harp, mandolin, sitar, clarinet and hurdy-gurdy. Wow, right?

Not everyone is familiar with the band. I know this. After all, it is an indie band, despite it critical acclaim and sold-out shows worldwide. I guess since they are not mainstream, winning the grammy for album of the year generated a lot of hate from billboard junkies and radio addicts. This led to the formation of the Who is Arcade Fire? tumblr account of hate that seems to be more popular than most other websites.

Although I can understand the confusion surrounding the win, I can't understand the ignorance, or the insistence that Gaga is better OMG, since Arcade Fire is a name that Google understands (Thank you, Win, for the suggestion that the confused do some research). They are even on YouTube.

Fans of popular music have to read some and listen more if they have to ask the title question and they will realise that the band, while different, is deserving of recognition for its talent.


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