It’s good to see so many positive user comments. While this particular album is not for me, I’m glad it’s not disappointing the AF diehards. As for the review, I think it’s dead on. Between the lines, I see a reviewer that desperately wants to like this record but can’t quite commit. Arcade Fire is definitely wheelhouse for the general Stereogum readership, but the many hesitations in this review tell the story that the actual review does not.
IS THAT THE GUY FROM THE PRETENDERS!!?!?!
First album I ever bought. I snapped it into my discman and listened to it end-to-end 6 times in a row on our ugly floral couch in front of the wood stove, pressing the cheap headphones into my ears until my wrists were sore. It was that night, taking off my headphones, I finally realized that music was the fabric that connects me to the world.
Yeah it’s a cool track, but it just feels like amateurish writing with good production. It vamps too long, the vocals are crammed, and the melody just meanders too much for my taste. Again, I can see why people would love this tune, just giving some counterpoint to the assessment that this is a “great, great song.”
This is good marketing.
Like a super-chill NIN
Man they just keep getting better. What a strong vocal, jesus christ. I absolutely love the mix too, anyone know who engineered this track?
I honestly love it. This track really breathes. Yeah it’s a bit electro, but that’s that. Yeah, it relies heavily on production, but it’s not slick.. I think the production is really smart and musical. This song has a great hook, a strong melody, and some really interesting chord movements.
The first 2 mins sound like a song idea demo, and a pretty weak one at that. There’s some really good writing in the last 45 seconds, but I can’t understand why they didn’t work in the payoff earlier, it could’ve been a good song if they actually assembled it as one. Also, the overdrive/compression that’s so chic right now just doesn’t work on Gibbard’s vocals.
I personally loved Band of Horses – Infinite Arms, that woulda made the top 25 for me. I’m also surprised to see Jonsi, Dead Weather, and Grinderman omitted from this list. Overall, most of the music on this list means nothing to me, and that’s unfortunate.
When I was very young I remember crying to the image of a man losing himself in space, drifting away from his family. So +1 for Space Oddity.
I think 2010 has been an amazing year for music so far. Just not for the music listed here. Great albums by Arcade Fire, Band of Horses, Dead Weather, Wolf Parade, Autolux (YES AUTOLUX), The National, MGMT, Spoon, Gorrilaz, Jonsi, Joanna Newsom, Broken Social Scene, etc etc just to name very very few. IMHO very few of these bands would make a “best albums of 2010″ list.
The good news is, all these artists have perpetual music-project ADD, so precious few of these bands are sustainable. Bad news is, the media-marketing “airtime” of (gasp) established bands, who’ve had their mettle tested and passed, is getting jacked by these immutably indistinguishable “music projects,” pushing adjectives like “dreamy, ephemerally atmospheric, ear-warming, pulsing, “whisper-close hazed-out,” chilly, psychedelic, fuzzy, . If I NEVER heard a band described as “breezy island sounds” again it would be too soon. I mean seriously. What the hell is going on here.
fruityloops eats guitars. anyone want my les paul?
Absolutely great. I love how it’s such massive style shift, but I don’t feel like he’s turned his back on his earlier work. It still feels like Sufjan, because only he can write songs this good, and arrange them so tastefully. Production is A+ too.
Excellent commentary, I agree 100%.
Oh wait, I see. Because the writer (s?) at Stereogum are in some kind of secret handshake club with Beach House. Giving these guys press is like greedy movie producers funding another scriptless Adam Sandler summer money-grab. It’s just flat insulting.
Absolutely awful. Why the hell are these people still getting press?
I had dinner with Sufjan once, and he is one of the most humble, non-presumptuous people I’ve ever met. He’s just one of those blessed artists who is constantly bombarded with ideas, fed by genuine feeling, a harsh and confusing childhood, and the need to express his wonder of the sprawling American landscape. A truly precious American composer. This stuff is shockingly beautiful, and I cherish his entire catalog.
This is an amazing record, I’m really glad to see a great band at #1. It’s been a long time, right? Also, this is such a big victory for Merge. I live in Chapel Hill, and a lot of that revenue is going to go right back towards great music, both local and otherwise. They work their asses off at Merge, and it’s the kind of label that takes chances for the sake of good art. Truly good news.
Ok, so let me get this counterpoint rant outta the way and then I’m going to agree with you at the end: This concert didn’t happen on the web. It happened at a Madison Square Garden, and cost millions of dollars and thousands of man-hours to put on. Unless the world suddenly becomes a utopian communist society, if there’s large-scale demand for something, someone is going to own it and make people pay for it. That’s the American way. I’ve been lead sound engineer for several large-scale live concerts and theater productions, and I can tell you right now, if no one showed up and actually paid to see it, instead just streaming it on the web for free, I would never dedicate my time, sweat, and expertise to something like that again, cause it’s hard work.
That said, the internet has a real shot at completely re-defining what ownership means and how it’s monetized. VEVO is trying to force an old model over a new archetype, and it doesn’t work. Everyone hates VEVO, and a business that’s hated dies. The whole problem is, we’re in limbo right now. Intellectual property has to be protected, even in the ether of the internet, but information can’t be restricted like this.
^ Holy shit you’re a tool.
This was actually their dress rehearsal for an off-broadway performance of “Jenny, Eat Something.”