Notes from Arcade Fire, live at Chicago Theatre, Chicago, IL 5/18/07 & live at Red Rocks, Denver, CO 9/17/07
Dear Arcade Fire,
It's taken me a while to comprehend and translate your epic live show into words, but I think it finally hit me the other day. Listening to KBUT as I went about my working day, another DJ played "No Cars Go" and I literally had to stop what I was doing. Back flooded the memories of two great evenings spent enjoying the splendor of your performance and sound. You don't put on a body-moving party ala !!!, but it seems every song builds upon the previous to create an endless stream of climatic anthems. As the familiar refrain of "No Cars Go" echoed out the aged Teocalli Tamale speakers, a familiar happiness came over me and I couldn't help but smile. Perhaps this is what the best artists can do in a live setting. Their live shows so positively impact their recorded output that each type of listening experience propels the other into a new level of satisfaction. Seeing the live show reminds one of the first time they heard "Rebellion (Lies)" on a friend's stereo. Hearing Neon Bible's "Keep the Car Running" reminds one of the lights and spectacle of the rich live version.
Unfortunately, I'm afraid that some may have overstated the great heights of your live show. You are not "the best live band in the world," but you are really, really, really great.
Other reviews, photos, and downloads:
Chicago Theatre - Rockitecture blog
Red Rocks - Bod Digital blog
Red Rocks - Westword Photos
Gorilla vs. Bear link to NPR recording of NYC concert