The Suburbs

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Christopher Monger
Montreal's Arcade Fire successfully avoided the sophomore slump with 2007's apocalyptic Neon Bible. Heavier and more uncertain than their near perfect, darkly optimistic 2004 debut, the album aimed for the nosebleed section and left a red mess. Having already fled the cold comforts of suburbia on Funeral and suffered beneath the weight of the world on Neon Bible, it seems fitting that a band once so consumed with spiritual and social middle-class fury should find peace "under the overpass in the parking lot." If nostalgia is just pain recalled, repaired, and resold, then The Suburbs is its sales manual. Inspired by brothers Win and Will Butler's suburban ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Christopher Monger
Montreal's Arcade Fire successfully avoided the sophomore slump with 2007's apocalyptic Neon Bible. Heavier and more uncertain than their near perfect, darkly optimistic 2004 debut, the album aimed for the nosebleed section and left a red mess. Having already fled the cold comforts of suburbia on Funeral and suffered beneath the weight of the world on Neon Bible, it seems fitting that a band once so consumed with spiritual and social middle-class fury should find peace "under the overpass in the parking lot." If nostalgia is just pain recalled, repaired, and resold, then The Suburbs is its sales manual. Inspired by brothers Win and Will Butler's suburban Houston, Texas upbringing, the 16-track record plays out like a long lost summer weekend, with the jaunty but melancholy Kinks/Bowie-esque title cut serving as its bookends. Meticulously paced and conservatively grand, fans looking for the instant gratification of past anthems like "Wake Up" or "Intervention" will find themselves reluctantly defending The Suburbs upon first listen, but anyone who remembers excitedly jumping into a friend's car on a sleepy Friday night armed with heartache, hope, and no agenda knows that patience is key. Multiple spins reveal a work that's as triumphant and soul-slamming as it is sentimental and mature. At its most spirited, like on "Empty Room," "Rococo," "City with No Children," "Half Light II (No Celebration)," "We Used to Wait," and the glorious Régine Chassagne-led "Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)," the latter of which threatens to break into Blondie's "Heart of Glass" at any moment, Arcade Fire makes the suburbs feel positively electric. Quieter moments reveal a changing of the guard, as Win trades in the Springsteen-isms of Neon Bible for Neil Young on "Wasted Hours," and the ornate rage of Funeral for the simplicity of a line like "Let's go for a drive and see the town tonight/There's nothing do, but I don't mind when I'm with you," from album highlight "Suburban War." The Suburbs feels like Richard Linklater's Dazed & Confused for the Y generation. It's serious without being preachy, cynical without dissolving into apathy, and whimsical enough to keep both sentiments in line, and of all of their records, it may be the one that ages so well. [The Suburbs was reissued after winning the Grammy for album of the year. The deluxe edition, which featured two bonus tracks, an 80-page photo booklet, and a bonus DVD featuring "Scenes from the Suburbs," a short film directed by Spike Jonze, arrived in August 2011.]
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/2/2011
  • Label: Merge Records
  • UPC: 673855042022
  • Catalog Number: 50420
  • Sales rank: 22,782

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 The Suburbs (5:15)
  2. 2 Ready To Start (4:15)
  3. 3 Modern Man (4:39)
  4. 4 Rococo (3:56)
  5. 5 Empty Room (2:51)
  6. 6 City With No Children (3:11)
  7. 7 Half Light II (4:13)
  8. 8 Half Light II (No Celebration) (4:27)
  9. 9 Suburban War (4:45)
  10. 10 Month of May (3:50)
  11. 11 Wasted Hours (a Life What We Can Live) (4:25)
  12. 12 Deep Blue (4:28)
  13. 13 We Used To Wait (5:01)
  14. 14 Sprawl I (Flatland) (2:54)
  15. 15 Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) (5:25)
  16. 16 The Suburbs (Continued) (1:31)
  17. 17 Culture Way (5:23)
  18. 18 Speaking In Tongues (3:52)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Scenes From the Suburbs
  2. 2 Behind the Scenes From the Suburbs
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Arcade Fire Primary Artist
David Byrne Vocals
Colin Stetson Saxophone
Ben Russell Strings
Owen Pallett Strings
Pietro Amato French Horn
Jeremy Gara Group Member
Win Butler Group Member
Régine Chassagne Group Member
Richard Reed Parry Strings, Group Member
Tim Kingsbury Group Member
Will Butler Group Member
Caleb Burhans Strings
Sarah Neufeld Strings, Group Member
Markia Anthony Shaw Strings
Rob Moose Strings
Clarice Jensen Strings
Nadia Sirota Strings
Yuji Numata Strings
Technical Credits
Markus Dravs Producer
George Marino Mastering
Mark Lawson Engineer
Spike Jonze Composer, Director
Scott Rodger Executive Producer
Don Murnaghan Engineer
Owen Pallett String Arrangements
Vincent Landay Producer
Arcade Fire Arranger, Composer, Producer, Executive Producer, String Arrangements
Win Butler Composer
Will Butler Composer
Marcus Paquin Engineer
Vincent Morisset Art Direction
Noah Goldstein Engineer
Gabriel Jones Cover Photo
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