Arcade Fire are an abominably average band, propelled by unimaginative hooks, meaningless lyrics and a fan-base of dedicated morons obsessed with the idea of listening to something “indie.”
Firstly, they are Canadian natives and as such, immediately seen as far superior as anything coming from America or Britain in terms of the independent music scene. The Canadian music scene appeals to your average Fitzroy-dwelling, fair trade-obsessed vintage trousers-wearing gear-hating asymmetrical Coopers Pale Ale-drinking judgemental twat who will tell you over and over again, seemingly without provocation, “I was in so into Arcade Fire in 2004.” Apart from this obsession with retroactive appreciation for an over-rated band, they love to tell everyone how much ‘better they sound on Vinyl.’ Well maybe they sound better on Vinyl, but all that Vinyl does for Arcade Fire and their legions of fans, is going from boring to boring with slightly better sound reproduction. It seems to me that the love for a certain set of bands in universal amongst this type of, and I am loathe to use the term, hipster which goes against the very definition of the sub-genre of trend.
My main problem with Arcade Fire begins with U2. U2 started a trend in pop music for grand lyrics about nothing at all. This trend has become epidemic amongst popular rock artists; Coldplay, Muse, The Killers and even more alternative acts like Arcade Fire, Foals and The Strokes seem to be following suite. It is very rare to hear political pop music anymore, all that ever seems to happen is that bands sing non-sense or how much it sucks to get dumped. It is disappointing to see people criticizing the 70 year old Bob Dylan for seeming tired on stage while morons like Arcade Fire and Kanye West draw world-wide YouTube audiences without a hint of criticism. Bob Dylan wrote about war, death, violence, civil rights and was the voice of a generation. Lady Gaga, hailed the so-called pop sensation of our generation sings about Disco Sticks. I need not elaborate.
However, this post is about Arcade Fire, so let me return to them. Their lyrical content does not at all reflect their reputation of a creative and intellectual band. A song provocatively titled Rebellion (Lies) provides this gem of political commentary “Sleeping is giving in, no matter what the time is. Sleeping is giving in, so lift those heavy eyelids.” Um, okay, I still have no idea what this song is about. Even pop-songs in the eighties had more political clout than this, think of Frankie Goes to Hollywood and The Boomtown Rats singing about the end of the world, while Arcade Fire drops a bunch of coloured balloons and people literally cannot shut the hell up about it. Arcade Fire, the product of generation without hardship, without fear or any real challenges. They whine on and continue to be wildly successful putting out repetitive and unimaginative music. The real problem I have with this though is that they are hailed critically and commercially as exactly the opposite.
They are shameless advertisers, one of the most commercialized bands on the music scene today and yet they still seem to maintain a loyal audience of self-proclaimed hipsters/alternative fans. Maybe this is more an indictment of the alternative music scene in itself rather that Arcade Fire but I cannot understand how they are able to remain so popular, for the lack of a better term, so “indie,” they won a Grammy for Christ’s sake.
“This is just another example of a band born of a generation of entitled, self-righteous, whiners who haven’t had to struggle and who have been told how good they are their whole lives. What kind of music can you really expect from that?”