Arcade Fire - Funeral
Feb 24, 2020
100
Jumping back in time, Arcade Fire's Funeral is truly one of the most innovative records ever made. The incredibly diverse songwriting, the wondrously immense instrumentals, and the incredibly powerful instrumentals all combine to create an experience like no other.

I could just end the review like that, but that doesn't really establish why this record is truly great. Tons of people have these kinds of emotions about their favorite albums, so what makes this the one album that pushes through so many? How is this one so much better than most of the music being put out...even today.

Perfection, if one truly thinks about it, is impossible in this world. No matter how good your record is, someone will always try to tear it down, even if the majority absolutely adores the music. A majority of music consumers love Imagine Dragons, yet there is an active community of people hating against the band due to their extremely unoriginal and generic sound. One of the most critically acclaimed albums ever made, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, by Kanye West, has many dislikes, from Anthony Fantano, who brought his score down from a 6 to a 5, to the variety of music consumers that hate his persona, and as a result hate his music.

It seems like no matter what we do, people will always hate records no matter how supposedly perfect the album in question truly is, but we also need to take into account the legitimacy of opinions and whether or not they should even be considered in the first place. Is there a true difference between an avid consumer of trap music and pop rap and a AOTY user who constantly listens to different artists and genres? Yes, there is a difference, but that doesn't make one person's opinion better than the other, as much as I hate to admit it.

Funeral is a record I believe can reach anyone and everyone no matter how they're feeling, and they may hate it at first, but in the end, the listener will realize the greatness of this record and the unfaltering superiority of the real talent at hand. I could just say this album is great, oh here's why, but that's not it. My goal today is to convince you that this album is really a masterpiece, and even if you have listened to it and didn't really enjoy it, after reading this, listen to it again, because I doubt you'll really have something to hate after this dissection of really one of the greatest records ever made.

Arcade Fire is a band made up of a beautiful marriage between Win Butler & Regine Chassagne and a handful of extremely talented individuals ranging from Butler's brother, William, keyboardist Richard Reed Parry, and bassist Tim Kingsbury. After Funeral, the band's instrumental capabilities began to increase further and further, and this record is the one that started it all. The greatness is unmeasured.

For starters, take a look at the lyrics, with every single line meaning something important to the band at an emotional, social, and physical level. Take a look at track 6, Crown Of Love, a dark track that culminates into pure joy that establishes a greater message than just being bleak. This song is essentially about a relationship meeting it's demise, and the main character is feeling extreme remorse towards their actions. The lyrics constantly beg for forgiveness, in a pleading state of depravity that further devolves into sadness, but while this all happening, the instrumentals are getting brighter and brighter, providing a deeper look into the psyche of this character. On the surface he appears to be better, and as time goes by, the people who know him best see him getting better, but the more time passes by, the further his lovesickness goes on, eventually fading under the facade of your outer self. You constantly try to better yourself physically and mentally, you keep yourself occupied with other hobbies and jobs in order to stray the attention away from this horrendous desire to love, and eventually it does fade away, but is that really a good thing? In the end, the song is coated in constant doubt and a beautiful display of humanity despite the depressing nature of the song. The repetition of the NO NO NO NO NO at the end is the inside voice fading away, being shoved done in order to make room for the next stage of life, and it doesn't matter if that's good or bad, it's something we simply have to cope & deal with. That's truly what it means to be human.

Many of the songs on this record play out like this, massive concepts being thrown into tight packages of sonical delight, and the greatness of the incredible technicality being presented is only further implemented on one of the most harmonious songs of the 21st century, Wake Up.

Immediately starting off with a band, the first second of time is filled up to the brim with luxurious instrumentation. The powerfully abundant riff accompanying the beginning is further explored through the fantastic performance through Win Butler's voice. Every word he manages to let out is embellished in pure emotion, with at times his voice cracking due to the heavy subject matter of his music. He perfectly switches from his calm singing tone to his heavy, semi-screaming tone, as he perfectly transitions to the orgasmic chorus. Each instrument, from the drums to the guitar all play their part in sounding fantastic, but somehow, in an almost otherworldly manner, it feels like each individual aspect has come to life, each playing their best as if they were alive. At this point it doesn't feel like music, it's pure pleasure. When Butler goes back to singing in the back half of the track, goosebumps crawl all over my body, and when the song finally ends, I feel satisfaction out of the incredible experience I just went through. Nothing feels rehearsed, nothing feels scripted, it's as if Butler and his family of musicians literally tore their hearts out and curated every little detail with every ounce of energy they had.

Currently one of my favorite bands ever, Arcade Fire didn't just publish a simple indie rock record, they changed the game forever, and no one will be able to replicate the greatness from this monster of an album. Every track is great. Every second is perfect. Every voice is heavenly.

True authenticity in music is almost impossible to truly encapsulate and at the same time keep the listener consistently engaged, but Arcade Fire makes it seem like it's as easy as making a sandwich.

You don't need enormous talent to make music, and you truly need is the endless drive to create & innovate and this band did just that.
3 Comments
Feb 24, 2020
Fantastic review! Really good job
Feb 24, 2020
thanks DoubleZ! appreciate the comment!
Feb 27, 2020
Excellent work here, keep it up!
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