Everything Now by Arcade Fire
Forty years on, disco is still very much alive and kicking. Leave it to Bacon Review stalwarts Arcade Fire to put together a solid dance record that sounds straight from the 70s but manages to avoid irony. Everything Now, the Canadian ensemble’s fifth record in their 13 years of existence, is a tour de force, and a nice rebound from their two previous (and relatively lesser) albums Reflektor and The Suburbs (#15 in 2013 and #8 in 2010, respectively).
While I hadn’t written them off entirely, the last decade from Arcade Fire had left me feeling as if they were just a shadow of what was. Thankfully, this new album has finally brought them back to their former glory. I recently listened to their ten-year-old second album Neon Bible, and Everything Now is right up there with it. “Everything Now,” the song shown in the video above, is one fantastic pop song. Put it on and feel yourself transported to another era, dressed in gold lamé, speckled in disco-ball spots and blissed out on cocaine.
Don’t stop with that song — this album is jam packed with greatness. “Signs of Life” is another disco number, whose video puts a young couple in the middle of B-movie X-files strangeness. “Creature Comfort,” a song about coping with the crushing pressure of life, was produced by Geoff Barrow, formerly of Portishead (speaking of gold lamé, you can watch the video here). “Electric Blue” let’s Régine Chassagne take the lead vocals, singing about the longing for a relationship that’s been put on temporary hold, narcissistic body issues, and being on different wavelengths with those you love (video here).
As you work your way through the album, what at first sounded light and upbeat soon becomes a magnifying glass on living in our excessively materialistic culture. The album appears to put the band in a similar headspace as that of bands like Radiohead, whose continued output gets darker, subversive, introspective and difficult. While they are a big part of the machine that makes us all want want want, they struggle with their place in it. It’s hard for me to put myself in their unique position, but I’m glad they can channel that energy into some great music for me to enjoy. And so should you.
4. Sleep Well Beast by The National
5. Soul of a Woman by Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
6. Relaxer by Alt-J
7. Hot Thoughts by Spoon
8. Colors by Beck
9. Mental Illness by Aimee Mann
10. The Wild by The Rural Alberta Advantage
11. american dream by LCD Soundsystem
12. Crack-Up by Fleet Foxes
13. Famous Last Words by The True Loves
14. Cry Cry Cry by Wolf Parade
15. Pure Comedy by Father John Misty
16. Shake the Shudder by !!!
17. La La Land (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) by La La Land
18. The Underside of Power by Algiers
19. What Now by Sylvan Esso
20. 50 Song Memoir by The Magnetic Fields
21. Plunge by Fever Ray
22. DAMN. by Kendrick Lamar
23. Capacity by Big Thief
24. The Tourist by Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
25. CCFX EP by CCFX
26. Woodstock by Portugal. The Man
27. MASSEDUCTION by St. Vincent
28. On the Spot by Hot 8 Brass Band
29. A Deeper Understanding by The War on Drugs
30. Planetarium by Sufjan Stevens, Nico Muhly, Bryce Dessner, & James McAlister
31. A Moment Apart by Odesza