Arcade Fire – Culture War (single) Arcade Fire – Culture War (single)

Arcade Fire - Culture War (single)

The funniest fallout to Arcade Fire’s unexpected triumph at the Grammy’s was the wave of confused stares. Crystallized in the blog,, the award came with a conclusion that the mainstream public is relatively clueless when it comes to the larger musical landscape. Here I was thinking it was the other way around and Arcade Fire was just stepping into a larger pond. The critical backlash showed just how small the world of indie really is and how uninviting the outside could be. “Who Is Arcade Fire?”, now taken in comic stride by the band, also diffused any accusations of selling out because the people they were supposedly selling out to were as vapid and blind as protagonists in a Bret Easton Ellis novel. The Grammy award winners now take a victory lap with a collaboration with Talking Heads founder David Bryne. Who the fuck is David Bryne? And for that matter who the fuck is Bret Easton Ellis?

Being Grammy winners comes with a certain responsibility, one being the mandatory re-release of an album which only came out last year. These are the channels one has to travel to reach the greater kingdom of the mainstream. The Suburbs re-release comes boostrapped with two new songs already debuted across the internet. The Surburbs will see its re-release in August which will only serve as a friendly reminder to people with the attention span of a goldfish.

“Culture War” drops listeners back into The Suburb‘s world with discussions regarding “the kids” and their future. The song is so unmistakably apart of the Arcade Fire universe, a listener could believe The Suburbs becoming its own genre — one with a distinct sound, style and language. If you are like me who has not listened to Arcade Fire for a few months, it only takes you a few moments into “Culture War” to become nostalgic for a time which was only 6 months ago. “Culture War” is charming, catchy and is surprising it did not make it onto The Suburbs initially. The outro is so heart churning, the song stands on a high pedestal dwarfing the David Bryne collaboration “Speaking In Tongues.”

Across the greater internet this single was advertised as a collaboration between David Bryne and Arcade Fire. This is deceptive as David Bryne appears nowhere on “Speaking In Tongues” save for the song’s closing outro. It is literally the least Bryne could do for this single. I do not know if he contributed his writing talents, production wizardry or just sat in the studio eating pizza while the band recorded but the song is pushing the definition of “featuring.” Perhaps this song could be “Inspired by David Bryne” or “done with the blessing of David Bryne.” It is strange that an already successful singer would not want to jump in the Arcade Fire kayak that is destined for the big shiny kingdom. Regardless, “Speaking In Tongues” is admirable but nowhere near the level of quality demonstrated by the A-side.

As Arcade Fire heads for horizons with newer fans, it is comforting to know that they may be one of the few who might survive the mainstream. The Culture War single is hardly worth mentioning other than the fact you will be getting a deleted scene from an already recognizable film. I wonder if people know who Arcade Fire is now. Everyone else seemed to be done with it a few months ago. I think there maybe some sort of interference which stands between us. Ohh look American Idol is on.

Culture War
Speaking In Tongues Featuring David Bryne

Arcade Fire - Culture War (single), reviewed by Kaptain Carbon on 2011-06-01T09:16:36-07:00 rating 3.0 out of 5

2 Responses about “Arcade Fire – Culture War (single)”

  • Smurphy-Lee says:

    Generally I prefer to comment with something sarcastic and intentionally inappropriate. But honestly all I can say here is solid review friend, I quite liked it.

  • rowe says:

    I really enjoyed this