News and Tribune


March 8, 2014

Arcade Fire wows crowd with explosive show

Concert was first in band’s North American Reflektor tour

LOUISVILLE — If anyone at Arcade Fire’s show Thursday night came only half-heartedly, they surely left as fans reborn.

The Canadian indie rock band’s opened its North American Reflektor tour at KFC Yum! Center and awed the crowd with jubilant songs and a dazzling light show.
Opening with the tour’s eponymous song, Arcade Fire played a fair amount of tracks from its newest album while paying homage to the oldies that true fans came for, including “Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains).” The set list was expertly arranged so that each song flowed seamlessly into the next, never giving the crowd a chance to break away from the trance-inducing performance.
The stage followed the “Reflektor” theme — a rotating backdrop was decorated in silver reflecting discs. The band even had a mascot, a walking disco ball who stood opposite the stage and rotated lazily. 
Though the venue didn’t sell out by any means — upper sections were curtained off and radio shows were giving away last-minute tickets — no one at the show seemed to mind, including Arcade Fire itself. The band still put on an explosive and expressive performance in front of more than 10,000 fans, musically filling up any empty space.
The six-person band was joined by additional backup musicians to create a full-bodied sound that was perfectly balanced with vocals. An odd variety of instruments, including Caribbean steel drums and an organ-grinder, only served to make the show that much more memorable.
Chemistry between married couple Win Butler and Régine Chassagne was mesmerizingly apparent, especially when Chassagne appeared on the stage opposite to sing back to Butler with impeccable clarity despite her otherwise shakily belted tunes.
After an artistically crafted show, the crowd was jolted from its trance when the Reflektors — an alter-ego band with members wearing giant-head masks — bounced clumsily onto the small opposite stage before the encore.

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