🎵 How Good Are They Really 🎵 Arcade Fire

HGATR number 87 then…

The Jam score fairly badly

Artist Rating
Aretha Franklin 4.64
Neil Young 4.48
R.E.M. 4.38
Beastie Boys 4.36
Otis Redding 4.34
David Bowie 4.31
The Beatles 4.31
Pixies 4.30
Leonard Cohen 4.30
The Cure 4.28
Björk 4.27
Marvin Gaye 4.21
Aphex Twin 4.18
Stevie Wonder 4.17
PJ Harvey 4.17
Nirvana 4.15
Radiohead 4.13
The Supremes 4.13
Prince 4.11
Wu-Tang Clan 4.11
Public Enemy 4.08
Pulp 4.08
Kate Bush 4.07
OutKast 4.07
Portishead 4.03
Kendrick Lamar 3.97
Bob Dylan 3.97
Jimi Hendrix 3.93
LCD Soundsystem 3.92
Joni Mitchell 3.89
Massive Attack 3.89
Bruce Springsteen 3.84
The Clash 3.77
Blondie 3.73
Rage Against The Machine 3.71
The Ramones 3.67
ABBA 3.66
Kanye West 3.65
Blur 3.61
The Smiths 3.57
Beyoncé 3.54
Bob Marley & The Wailers 3.48
Jeff Buckley 3.47
Idlewild 3.42
Madonna 3.40
Manic Street Preachers 3.39
Fleetwood Mac 3.39
Toots & The Maytals 3.35
The White Stripes 3.34
Supergrass 3.32
The Smashing Pumpkins 3.30
Elton John 3.28
Kylie Minogue 3.27
Sugababes 3.22
Rihanna 3.19
The Prodigy 3.18
Led Zeppelin 3.16
Pink Floyd 3.15
Jay-Z 3.14
Taylor Swift 3.14
Interpol 3.12
The Rolling Stones 3.09
Destiny’s Child 3.05
The Strokes 3.03
Elvis Presley 3.02
Weezer 3.00
Girls Aloud 2.93
Britney Spears 2.85
Belle And Sebastian 2.85
Metallica 2.81
Green Day 2.81
Madness 2.80
Basement Jaxx 2.75
The Jam 2.75
Oasis 2.71
Whitney Houston 2.69
Lady Gaga 2.61
Queen 2.60
Billy Joel 2.57
Bloc Party 2.41
Eminem 2.38
Mariah Carey 2.32
Blink-182 2.21
Adele 2.05
Red Hot Chili Peppers 1.90
The Spice Girls 1.81

Today; Arcade Fire

Are we ready to start?

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

0 voters

  • Funeral
  • Neon Bible
  • The Suburbs
  • Reflektor
  • Everything Now

0 voters

And the singles

  • Neighbourhood #1 (Tunnels)
  • Neighbourhood #2 (Laika)
  • Neighbourhood #3 (Power Out)
  • Cold Wind
  • Rebellion (Lies)
  • Wake Up
  • Black Mirror
  • Keep The Car Running
  • Intervention
  • No Cars Go
  • The Suburbs
  • Month Of May
  • We Used To Wait
  • Ready To Start
  • City With No Children
  • Speaking In Tongues
  • Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)
  • Reflektor
  • Afterlife
  • We Exist
  • Everything Now
  • Creature Comfort

0 voters

Yet another diminishing returns band.

When they were good, they were very very good
But now that they aren’t, they are duller.



^this. Except I think Funeral carries them to a 4 for me.


Funeral is a 5, Neon Bible is a 4, everything else is a 3 with occasional highlights (including the Suburbs).

Haven’t seen them live since Neon Bible tour, but they were one of the fiviest fives I think I’ve ever witnessed when I did.

Probably lands at 4 overall - it would be higher if I thought they would ever recapture the magic, but I suspect they’re a spent force.


I have said recently that “Arcade Fire fucking suck”. They don’t. Funeral is an incredible album and they have 5-6 brilliant songs outside of it. However their last two albums are two of the most offensive albums I’ve heard. Making music that lazy and insipid feels like it has to be done on purpose, or you woudn’t have the gall to actually release it. Add on to that one of the worst marketing campaigns of all time.

Currently a two. Might bump up to a three if I listen to Funeral today.

1 Like

It’s the perpetually vexing question of our times isn’t it? Do you rate long lived and much loved bands on their peaks or on the ratio of their best stuff to everything else?

I think because it’s only really funeral and a couple of tracks off nb that really do it for me (and there’s so much stuff, including suburbs that doesn’t work for me) I’m going for the ratio rather than the peak

1 Like

Funeral is brilliant, neon Bible is half a great album and I haven’t liked anything else by them.
Was going to give them a 2 but funeral bumps them to 3.


I like a lot of NB and Sprawl II is really fucking good so that tips it into a 4 I think. Still amazing to think of the disparity in quality between then and now tbh.

1 Like

Saw them in Cardiff on that tour. Amazing.

I tend to focus on the peaks because that’s how my listening is weighted. I don’t really care how mediocre later Arcade Fire album are, because I don’t have to listen to them.

On the basis that early Arcade Fire were awesome - live and on record - they’re a five from me.

1 Like

Nearly went for a five but I’m going to go for a four (it’s probably about a 4.2-4.3 for me). Funeral is an exceptional record, and there is brilliance through the rest of their output. (I don’t own Everything Now, though)

Wouldve been a 5 after 2/3 albums.

Also, I’d said this a few times but The Suburbs would be up with Funeral if you took a chunk out of the middle of the record:

“The Suburbs”
“Ready to Start”
“Modern Man”
“Empty Room”
“City with No Children”
“Half Light I”
“Half Light II (No Celebration)”
“Suburban War”
“Month of May” (maybe leave this one in)
“Wasted Hours”
“Deep Blue”
“We Used to Wait”
“Sprawl I (Flatland)”
“Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)”
“The Suburbs (Continued)”


Funeral is an exceptional album. Neon Bible is an exceptional album. The Suburbs is wonderful. Reflektor has the makings of a great record but is flabby. Everything Now was toilet. Huge band in my “musical upbringing”, my last.fm stats are still massively skewed from listening to Funeral so much as a teenager.

Beyond releasing some incredible music, their live shows are where its at. Some of my very favourite gig moments are at the hands of AF - The Reflektors show at the Roundhouse with band members dancing in the crowd after their set as Win Djed, their Glastonbury headline set, that Reading set. They’ve got Bowie and Byrne to do guest vocals, that’s pretty fucking cool imo

Easy to forgive the lows when the highs are so personal and so great. Easy 5 cheers


Half Light II is brilliant wtf


It’s okay. I just think that it’s an album that starts and ends exceptionally (Sprawl II is maybe my all-time favourite song of theirs - either that or No Cars Go) but I just find it sags in the middle. It’s still a very good album imo but would be exceptional if trimmed to 10-12 tracks.

Exceptional exceptional exceptional

Could definitely have done with dropping a few tracks, but all the editing in the world wouldn’t make those songs as good as the ones on Funeral. Sprawl II is amazing though, and overall, as it is, not a bad album.

Totally agree with the general consensus on this band, amazing debut but diminishing returns since then, and the last one was one of the worst records released by a formerly good band in quite some time.


They’re a five. Four excellent albums and one hopefully inexplicable blip. Amazing live if you don’t catch them in a bad mood. I also struggle to think of another 21st-century act you’d be able to make a better “best of” than them other than maybe Kanye?

Funeral - 9
Neon Bible - 8
The Suburbs - 10
Reflektor - 8
Everything Now - 2