It almost seems not fair that all these wonderful bands and performers are playing, clashing, and tearing up and down the country at the same time. Normally a tour of any one of the bands that have been on offer this January, would elicit palpitations from even the most jaded of music critics. But having everything and everyone touring at once makes this summer a real life indie/music nerd/fan girl/boys wet dream. I’m not complaining of course, it just can all seem slightly overwhelming at times, but hey when it rains in this drought ridden land, it bloody pours.
Now I wouldn’t want to pit one brilliant band against another, unless of course there was a drunken dance off of some sort involved. But where The National on Monday were impressive, epic, heartbreaking and frenzied; The Arcade Fire on Tuesday were impressive, epic, silly, and good old fashioned wholesome fun. There is nothing quite like seeing a band that are at the top of their game, and how their concert will always remain firmly etched into your memories. This was boys and girls was one of those special nights.
Look, I know that The Arcade Fire are a rock multi-instrumental indie outfit. But I found myself surprised at just how much gusto and power their songs contained. Part stage magicians, part funfair, and all band, Arcade Fire opened with Wake Up, it was gloriously loud, joyful beginning to an gloriously loud, energetic, joyful, and uplifting show.
I have heard some negative comments about the crowd on Tuesday night, and in response all I want to do is ask what show were you attending? It certainly wasn’t the same show that I attended, the one where Arcade Fire had the entire sell out audience eating out of their hand, smiling, singing, crying, jumping, clapping, and dancing along to every single song. And hey I should know, I kept turning around to watch all those happy faces.
I know that I should probably talk more about why The Arcade Fire charmed the pants off everybody, but seeing as my review is coming two days late, (hey I was busy doing detailed job applications, and writing a story, in that order) pretty much everyone seems to have Arcade Fire eloquently covered. But I will say this all the hype you have heard about Arcade Fire live is completely and utterly true, and all those live videos really don’t do them justice, you cant feel their music as it pounds and resonates through the air, see the sweat running off their perky faces, or shout, clap and scream in appreciation without attracting some odd stares.
The Setlist for the Tuesday Night (22/01/08)
Keep The Car Running
No Cars Go
Black Wave/Bad Vibrations
Age of Consent- A New Order cover, as if you didn’t know that…
Ocean of Noise
The Well and the Lighthouse
Headlights Look Like Diamonds
(Antichrist Television Blues)
Personal highlight of the show, was when the band played Headlights Look Like Diamonds off their The Aracde Fire EP, which along with their 2001 Demo, I probably listen to the most. It was like a little recognition along my own cheesy lines of, ‘Hey you haven’t heard the older stuff live Sydney so this one’s for you.’ I was pretty impressed that I managed to get all the woos from that song in perfect time to the vocal. I’m normally the odd one out, when it comes to that sort of thing.
The Arcade Fire live were everything that I hoped they would be, everything that I wanted them to be, everything that they should have been, and then a whole lot more.