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10 favorite albums of 2010 - #1: The Suburbs by Arcade Fire

Big surprise, right? Those of you who know me - you could have probably guessed I would pick Arcade Fire's spectacular album, The Suburbs.

Arcade Fire is the most moving, interesting, and important group making music today. There, I said it. That's a pretty big claim, but after experiencing their third solid gold album, I'm convinced. They can be so somber. Gut-wrenchingly gloomy. And then, so damned uplifting and hopeful. They make me want to take their music seriously. But then, if Arcade Fire wanted me to listen to the their music while giving myself a hot tar bath, I'd probably do it.

But seriously. From the opening track:

     So can you understand
     why I want a daughter while I'm still young?
     I wanna hold her hand
     and show her some beauty
     before this damage is done.

     But if it's too much to ask, if it's too much to ask,
     then send me a son.

Arcade Fire makes some grand statements in this album. Listen to it. And listen to the words. Let the music settle into your pores. Let its spirit infest you for a while.

     We watched the end of the century
     compressed on a tiny screen.
     A dead star collapsing, and we could see
     something was ending.
     Are you through pretending? 
     We saw the signs in the suburbs.

You will see what I mean.


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