26 Jul 2017

Arcade Fire - Everything Now (album review)

This album has absolutely no merit. Seriously. The lead single is good. A fluke. A fluke, god damn. But listen no further, for your own safety. For your own sanity. I listened to it all, so you don't have to. Like Jesus dying for all of our sins, I listened all the way through.


Avoid this album Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, sometimes Sunday. Definitely Sunday.

Avoid this album. It goes on and on and I know I don't want it.

Avoid this album, Win Butler tries to sound sexy on Good God Damn.

Avoid this album, Arcade Fire try to do ska, on a song called Infinite Content. Much less self aware than it sounds.

Avoid this album, this band genuinely seem to use Friendly Fires and Black Eyed Peas as a touchstone.

Avoid this album, Win Butler does a falsetto that makes Thom Yorke's Moon Shaped Pool vocals seem fine. Matt Bellamy all of a sudden seems like a byronic sex god.

Avoid this album, the intro and outro piece allegedly link up, almost to trick and lure you into wading through the quagmire once more.

Avoid this album, the fact that it's front cover looks like a Killers b-side comp is not ironic or self aware, merely apt.

Maybe listen to it once. There is fun to be had in how bafflingly awful it is. It's definitely worth a listen. I laughed out loud four times. But after the laughter, I am speechless. I am unable to write a proper review. How did this band get so bad? When did their lyrics get THIS bad? Like so bad that the memory of You Already Know's "when your love is bad, I don’t know why you’re so sad" seems like poetry. Until this album came out, Animal Collective's Painting With was the worst album I'd ever heard by a band I love. But at least that made me want to listen again and see if I'd missed anything. This album just gives me no hope for the human race the whole time it's in my short term memory.

In the late eighties, my lecturer Gareth released an italo-disco single that nodded to early hip-hop. Although this is of novelty value, litres of it, it almost feels like a cop out that this still of rapping has been appropriated and made worse by a band that charge more than £50 a ticket.

On Saturday, my housemate said: "Arcade Fire, it's just U2 with accordions, isn't it?", the other day. But after listening to this album, the prospect of Bono and Edge (and Larry and Adam too) emerging from the Everything Now carcrash wielding accordions would be nothing but a joy. 

zero out of ten

(Words: Cal Cashin)