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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars satire AND a church organ
Everyone reviewing this album seems to have to choose either the can't-beat-Funeral-EVER or wow-WAY-better-than-Funeral approach. To me they are two different records, and you should appreciate them both in their own way! This one is certainly bigger, darker and slightly more experienced, and if that's what you like buy it RIGHT NOW. The gradually building layers of...
Published on 23 Aug 2007 by De_Nada72

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16 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Only your heroes can truly let you down
Oh dear, Arcade Fire believe their own press as world's best band and produce album that befits their new capital B 'Big' status, ie an album that kicks off their career as a franchise rather than just a fantastic band with great tunes.

Probably still awesome live, which may well cover the comparative weakness of the songwriting, but the production on this...
Published on 25 Mar 2007 by D. Salmon


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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars satire AND a church organ, 23 Aug 2007
By 
This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
Everyone reviewing this album seems to have to choose either the can't-beat-Funeral-EVER or wow-WAY-better-than-Funeral approach. To me they are two different records, and you should appreciate them both in their own way! This one is certainly bigger, darker and slightly more experienced, and if that's what you like buy it RIGHT NOW. The gradually building layers of different instruments are just beautiful, and I keep finding random bits of lyrics swimming agreeably round in my head (MTV, what have you done to me? Save my soul, set me free!...). Every single song is my favourite. They are all fantastic little masterpieces.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful 'difficult' second album, 11 Oct 2007
By 
M. Gardner "Afro Matt" (Somerset, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
'Funeral' was an exceptional album, one that for lesser bands might have also immediately signed a death warrant for any subsequent outings. Thankfully, Arcade Fire are not a lesser band. 'Neon Bible' is an album just as wonderfully rich and textured as the debut that preceded it. 'Keep the Car Running' and 'No Cars Go' perfectly bookend the album, both wonderfully intricate, uplifting anthems that suffer none of the banal simplicity that usually comes with such a tag. There is more orchestration here, a facet that only fails on a couple of minor occasions, but the trio of 'Neon Bible', 'Intervention' and 'Black Wave' are simply fantastic, the latter two proving equal to, if not better than, the majority of the tracks on 'Funeral'. The Arcade Fire are one of only a few truly original and interesting bands around at the moment. If you didn't manage to catch their debut, then by god you need to make sure that this follow-up doesn't pass you by.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Diversity Rules, 23 Feb 2007
Once again, Arcade Fire entertain with a panoply of sound that is as diverse as it is complete. They show themselves as adroit at creating a sound that reveals anthems in their songs yet breaks down to eclectic simplicity in sections. There are gems of gorgeous riffs on Neon Bible that emerge from the very large scale sound that Arcade Fire are able to produce.

There is progression from Funeral but whereas I didn't feel I wanted to part too far from the formula of that album, having enjoyed it so much, the change is enough to feel the distance while retaining their uniqueness and character.

I may have listened to an advance copy but I will help their chart position by buying the album from an appropriate source. Record company executives take note: where the music is of a quality worth buying, people will do so. This definitely comes into that category of worth buying.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Neon lights, 1 July 2007
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Neon Bible [VINYL] (Vinyl)
Personally, I was terrified as I waited for the Arcade Fire's second album -- so many bands have made exquisite first albums, only to disappoint with the second.

But there are few missteps in the amazing "Neon Bible," which tries out a new sound for the Montreal band -- it sounds darker, eerier, and thoroughly exquisite. They take the chamberpop sound to a stormy cliffside over the ocean.

It opens with steady acoustic guitar, and a swell of windy synth that sounds like waves crashing on the rocks. "I will walk down to the ocean/After waking from the nightmare/No moon, no pale reflection/Black mirror, black mirror," Win Butler murmurs over a rising tide of clashing piano.

They slip into the shimmering rock'n'roll of "Keep The Car Running," which cascades down into a beautiful folky tune wrapped in synth. The songs that follow continue this feeling: the quietly taut title track, ghostly experimental, transcendent little guitar-piano ballads, soaring organ pop, and even a sparkling, catchy indiepop tune or two.

The Arcade Fire obviously took their time crafting this album, and making all the kind of intelligent rock people expect from them. But the sound is entirely different -- it's darker and stranger than its predecessor, as well as sounding a bit more processed.

Granted, I wasn't crazy about the pipe-organ blues of "Intervention." However, the other songs are sheer brilliance musically -- a beautiful thunderstorm of instrumentation, with the sound of a sonic religious experience. Just listen to the crescendo of soaring voices, drums, horns and strings at the end of "No Cars Go."

As for the instrumentation, it's packed in dense, shifting layers. Flexible guitars, clashing piano, tinkling xylophone, accordion, hurdy-gurdy, bells, dark drumming, strings and samples. The keyboard is the finishing touch, giving everything an otherworldly sound.

As if the music weren't powerful enough, we're given Win Butler's wailing vocals, often backed by one or more soaring female voices. No wonder he sounds so depressed -- the lyrics are full of bombs, flight from hostile countries, and the sorrow of living in interesting times. "Every night my dream's the same/Same old city with a different name/They're not coming to take me away/I don't know why but I know I can't stay..."

The Arcade Fire pour out a powerful, exquisite second album in "Neon Bible," one of the most compellingly beautiful albums this year.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars it grows, 18 July 2007
This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
both the albums took me some time to get used to. Funeral i gave a chance after reading about it a lot (i do tend to follow the critics, yeah), while Neon Bible i'm hooked to after seeing them live (do that if you have a chance, by the way). if you want "development" or "growth", i'd have to say the lyrics seem more outward than the introspective lyrics of Funeral and also the songs all in all seem a bit more FOCUSED. anyway, i thought Neon Bible gave more of the same as Funeral in how i need to listen to the songs and find the different bits and layers that i like to focus on in each song in order to really appreciate all Arcade Fire has accomplished. don't have any expectations in which way they're going with it and just let it EXCEL in front of your ears.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Studio stuff is great, but the true test, 6 July 2007
By 
S. B. Street "Bluestreety" (Manchester UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
I first heard Arcade Fire on some music channel whilst channel hopping. 'Wake up' had just started and I was gripped. One of the best songs I've ever heard in my 52 years.(so I'm not 'studenty type)Straight onto my computer, on Amazon and purchased Funeral. Now funeral took it's time to grow on me, but it did. So I waited with great anticipation for the second album and purchased that as soon as it came out. Neon Bible doesn't need to grow on me, I loved it right away. One or two tracks are not that great, but in the main, thanks to Keep the car running, No cars go and Windowsill in particular, this is a damn good effort for a second album which follows a greatly acclaimed first.
But, to anyone who doubts Neon Bible, I say catch Arcade Fire doing it live, then you can really judge an album. I'm seeing them in October and I cannot wait, although at my age perhaps I should learn to wait!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece?, 4 July 2007
By 
M. Hiles "arcadiandream" (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
A lot to live up to, its safe to say. The 8-10 (or however many you want) piece band from Canada possibly released the greatest album of the decade with there 2004 debut 'Funeral'.

So critically acclaimed with a loyal fanbase, here's another bunch of euphoric opera-rock songs to treat your ears with. Rarely dipping in form, fans will hail this as another masterpiece, but unfortunately, it has a few tame songs, that never really get going ('Neon Bible', 'Black Wave/bad vibrations', 'My Body Is A Cage').

However,these are not by any means bad songs, just with the high hopes and expectations that they were given, your hardly blown away.

Elsewhere, this album is faultless, holding gems such as 'Intervention', 'Ocean Of Noise' and '(Antichrist-television-blues)'. Possibly, this album contains the most epic songs they have ever recorded in 'Keep The Car Running' and 'No Cars Go'.

Overall, a quality effort, from what arguably, is the greatest band in the world. A must for any self-respecting music fan. Your collection isin't complete without Arcade Fire. Simple as that.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Getting better and better, 13 Mar 2007
By 
E. JONES (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
I never thought they would top Funeral but they have. I was also very wary of all the hype surrounding this album as this so often leads to disappointment, but now after listening to it many times in different environments, I can honestly say that it's one of my favourite albums of recent times.

Particular highlights are Keep The Car Running - I love the use of the string orchestra playing open strings at the beginning and the "crowd voices" towards the end of the song. I also love how Intervention begins with a huge organ sound before the strumming guitars comes in.

My only complaint is the dull album cover! After the EP and Funeral having excellent artwork and cardboard cases, the cover for Neon Bible and the traditional jewel case is a bit of a letdown, but once it's in your CD player, you will not complain!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must Buy!, 16 Mar 2007
This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
I heard this played recently and asked what it was, never having heard of the band - I then went and bought the album. I've been playing it near-constantly since then and it just gets better and better. Some reviewers say it is less good than the first album 'Funeral', but as a new fan who bought Neon Bible first and then went and bought Funeral, I'd say the reverse, its clearly a 'second' album, being rather better put-together (although I agree, Funeral is stil amazing!). This is a stunning and inventive work and will surely join future 'great album' lists. I've been having a really tough week and listening to this has kept me going!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My Neon Bible., 23 Dec 2008
By 
Flickering Ember "I need a break and I wanna ... (Once Upon A Long Ago.) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Neon Bible (Audio CD)
I bought this album on the strength of some reviews I had read in the music magazines at the time of release, although I admit I must have been living in a cave for some time as I had not heard Funeral before. Therefore, I came to this with open eyes and ears and no expectations or preconceptions.

This isn't easy listening, but it's certainly worth the effort. Most notably, the incredibly powerful My Body Is A Cage; who'd have thought a cathedral organ would sound so perfect in a modern indie recording? It's a breathtaking song and easily the best on the album and an instant classic.

The lyrics to all the songs hark back slighlty to a different time, and have a great deal of depth and perception to them. I really enjoyed listening to them as they made me think.

An absolutely brilliant album; one of the best of 2007 and a modern classic.
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Neon Bible
Neon Bible by Arcade Fire (Audio CD - 2007)
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