"Arcade Fire's sixth album, "We" invites you to a journey into the torments of its author, wrapped in a pop/rock music like no other."
TONYB (26.05.2022)  
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The release of an album by Arcade Fire, a Canadian band that has somewhat revolutionized the pop/rock world at the dawn of this millennium, remains an event in itself. And "We", the band's sixth album, is no exception to the rule, exploring in quasi-autobiographical lyrics various torments such as withdrawal, digital addiction and other subjects strongly amplified by the recent events of the last two years of pandemic.

From the beginning, the rhythmic bass carries us along a melody immediately catchy, carried at first by a simple but luminous piano. Little by little, the different ingredients make their appearance with a sober but neat orchestration, before the title takes a more electro and dynamic turn to finish in a little abrupt way. The beginning of the second part of 'Age of Anxiety' turns out to be much more introspective, in a style that vaguely evokes Mark Hollis, before leaving again in a rhythmic farandole where the alternation of the male and female vocals is wonderful.

After this first chapter in 4 parts, Arcade Fire takes us in a more solemn journey ('End of the Empire'), made of parts accompanied in a very sober way with the piano or the acoustic guitar, highlighting the limpid voice of Win Butler, and some symphonic passages where the careful orchestration gives its power to this track with a half-tempo rhythmic, in a style that we could easily qualify as progressive pop with accents close to the Beatles (don't we hear some little airs of 'Imagine' at the very beginning? ).

The real pearl of "We" is 'The Lightning', a small racy pop jewel leering towards Coldplay while keeping the richness and the subtlety of the characteristic arrangements of the Canadians. A totally addictive anthem, this track will not stop running through the listener's head and should unleash the crowds in concert.

The last bravura piece of the album, again in two parts, sees the rather anecdotal participation of Peter Gabriel in the chorus ('Unconditional II') in support of Régine Chassagne, on a background of very marked electro consonances, with ethnic percussions. It is not necessarily the style that we prefer in Arcade Fire, but it shows all its eclecticism.

The whole thing ends with a reconciliatory track, 'We', inviting us all to a redemption tinged with optimism, declined in acoustic voice/dry guitar mode and whose vaporous end incites the listener to take the album back to its very beginning to relive once again this journey to the gates of consciousness, served by a music like no other.

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01. Age of Anxiety I - 5:27
02. Age of Anxiety II (Rabbit Hole) - 6:41
03. Prelude - 0:30
04. End of the Empire I–III - 5:23
05. End of the Empire IV (Sagittarius A*) - 3:54
06. The Lightning I - 3:01
07. The Lightning II - 2:34
08. Unconditional I (Lookout Kid) - 4:33
09. Unconditional II (Race and Religion) - 4:20
10. We - 3:51

Jeremy Gara: Batterie
Régine Chassagne: Chant / Claviers / Piano, Accordéon
Richard Reed Parry: Guitares / Basse
Tim Kingsbury: Guitares
Will Butler: Basse / Claviers
Win Butler: Chant / Guitares / Basse / Claviers / Piano, Percussions
Peter Gabriel: Chant / Invité
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