I went to see Arcade Fire last night in the O2 in Dublin. There are no words. I've been a fan since I first heard funeral, probably in 2005 or so. I'll never forget hearing that album for the first time, that feeling of 'this is unlike anything else I've ever heard,' the gloomy euphoria, a kind of gritty sparkle, songs that are as amazing to listen to on your own while walking down the street as they are bounding off the walls of a huge arena.
Every time you hear a song of theirs, you discover a new lyric that you've never quite appreciated before. There are few bands in the world who can marry interesting and intelligent lyrics with the most beautiful melodies, layers of sounds from what seems like hundreds of instruments and most importantly epic, fully committed live performances. They set a standard for live performance that is unlikely to be met by any other band around at the moment as far as I can see. It's the kind of performance where you feel like dancing, crying and laughing all at once. It completely overtakes your senses.
I first saw them live at Oxegen in 2007, then at Oxegen in 2010 and finally last night. Their setlist was mostly songs from Funeral and The Suburbs but with a few from their second album such as Intervention, My Body Is a Cage, No Cars Go and Keep the Car Running.
The higlights for me were the Neighbourhoods and Wake Up which was their final song. Irish crowds, it has to be said are some of the most enthusiastic 'sing-alongers' in the world and Win himself said that each time they come to Ireland, we set a new standard among Europeans. I don't doubt that he's being genuine there, only an extreme cynic would! He reminisced about their 2005 Electric Picnic gig which is legendary among their Irish performances.....if only I could travel back in time!
My sister came along and although she doesn't know a lot of their music, she was blown away too. I can't imagine anyone in the world from a Ke$ha lover, to the Daniel O' Donnell obsessed who wouldn't be overwhelmed by their live performance. Truly the best live act I have ever seen and probably....will ever see.
Bought a limited edition lithograph that says the date of the concert on the bottom, it's hanging proudly on my wall.
I know I sounds like an obsessed freak. I also know that there are plenty of bands out there who may be just as amazing as arcade fire and I'm excited to get the know them but for now, I shall just wallow in this post AF hangover of delight....until the next time they come to Ireland!