Arcade Fire’s Win Butler Explains Why His Brother Will Quit The Band

Arcade Fire’s Win Butler Explains Why His Brother Will Quit The Band

In the middle of March, Arcade Fire kicked off the rollout for their new album WE with the triumphant comeback single “The Lightning I, II.” Just two days later, founding member Will Butler — brother of frontman Win — announced he had left the band. After people had already noticed Will’s conspicuous absence (and the sudden presence of Wolf Parade’s Dan Boeckner), he took to Twitter and explained his departure: “I left at the end of last year, after the new record was complete. There was no acute reason beyond that I’ve changed — and the band has changed — over the last almost 20 years. Time for new things.”

Now, Win Butler has commented at length for the first time since his brother’s announcement. Speaking to Zane Lowe, Win said:

I mean, I love Will. I mean, he’s my brother. He’s my only brother and he’s always had interests that transcend music. I think that he sort of followed his big brother into this band. It was his first job. I can’t really speak for him but this pandemic was… He’s got three young children, and Regine and I are able to bring our child on the road. But I think that if I wasn’t, there’s things way more important than music, so I mean… my brother has his own path. He took a year out in the middle of… To go back to school and he’s sort of done his own thing the whole time. I think that there’s things other than music that he has interest in. But I think fundamentally you only have one chance to raise your family and to kind of have a life with your family. I think it’s a very extremely understandable… It’s easy just to get… I’m proud of him for doing his own thing. The whole band is my family and there’s family you’re born with, and family that you choose. I think sometimes the family you choose can be just as big a thing, because it’s love and life, all that shit, it’s not a straight line. I’m not really scared of any of it. I feel really grateful to be able to play still and to be able to do shows. It was really dark not having access to that for me. This band is my life so there’s no out for me fortunately.

Nice to hear there’s no bad blood between the Butler brothers. You can revisit our review of WE below and Chris DeVille and I comparing notes on the album here.

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