Arcade Fire, a Canadian indie rock band that combine extravagant instrumentals and thematic songwriting, seems to have a different approach in their sound in their new album, Reflektor. This album has a more groove-oriented feeling to it, in comparison to their previous albums. Known for their first three critically acclaimed albums, The Suburbs, Neon Bible and Funeral, this new album seems to be a step away from their typical lavish sounding music. The band consists of multi-instrumentalists, Win Butler, Régine Chassagne, Richard Reed Parry, William Butler, Tim Kingsbury, and Jeremy Gara. Reflektor maintains the expansive sound and deep lyrical themes of Arcade Fire.
Lyrically, Arcade Fire seems to put out their themes in a more obvious way than their previous works but nevertheless, Arcade Fire does maintain their complex meanings. Much like their previous albums, Arcade Fire sings about being an outsider, especially in the songs, “We Exist” and “Joan of Arc” which deals being ignored by a majority that they don’t agree with. Vocally, Win Butler and Régine Chassagne, the lead vocal duo in the band, remain subtle but powerful throughout. The darkness in the vocals seem to add to the various themes in the lyrics which has always given Arcade Fire their original sound.
Reflektor goes into something much different from their previous works, and rather than having instrumentation as layered as previous albums, there is a mixture of genres, varying from new age to disco. Tempo wise, Arcade Fire maintains their epic sound but seems to slow it down a bit and seems to draw out some of their instrumentation more. Although not as layered as older albums, Arcade Fire maintains their large sound and shows that they can perform different genres but it seems that they put all of these experimentations into the one album, Reflektor.
With an eclectic mix of sounds, Arcade Fire came back with a semi-new sound in Reflektor, and although lyrically they have remained the same, the band has changed up their sound instrumentally. Even though this album is not what many expected from Arcade Fire, there is still something in Reflektor that everyone will enjoy.