Arcade Fire, 'Grown Up' and Introspective, Returns to Coachella With An Emotional Show in 2022.
If the days of indie rockers making a mark at Coachella were on their way out, Arcade Fire may have arrived just in time to save the day.
The band's arrival, which was publicized only a day before their concert, was the perfect surprise for anyone who misses the days when a band with this kind of orchestral instrumentation and rich, thematic lyrics could get top stage.
It's been seven long years since Arcade Fire accomplished precisely that, but those days didn't seem so distant as a throng crowded the Mojave stage for a show that could only be characterized as emotional, if not cathartic.
|Returns to Coachella 2022|
Things got off to a rocky start when lead vocalist Win Butler had to stop singing just seconds after going into their new single, "The Lightning I," off their upcoming album "We."
But, if the audience was "waiting for the lightning," they got it swiftly when Butler broke into "The Lightning II," the companion tune. By the end of the song, the audience was applauding along enthusiastically, and Butler was triumphantly hoisting his guitar above his head.
With the newcomers out of the way, the band launched into a number of their well-known hits. During "Rebellion (Lies)," the crowd went into overdrive, with many people joining in on the iconic "wooh" sound.
The show's emotional high point occurred shortly after when Butler stopped to remind the audience that Coachella was where Arcade Fire was "presented to the world in 2005."
"We came here as kids," he explained. "We are no longer children."
Butler then mentioned the COVID-19 epidemic for the first of multiple times during the concert, saying that it has "been a tremendous moment of change, but we can't let it change or break us."
He then went into a moving performance of "The Suburbs," during which he made a little but significant modification to one of the song's most popular lyrics, saying, "and all of the walls they constructed in 2020 eventually tumble and they all signify nothing, nothing at all."
Butler requested if he could play a new song after performing near-perfect renditions of classics "Ready to Start," "Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)," and "Everything Now," as well as a stage dive and some crowd surfing. The lyrics, which mentioned it being "all okay to be unhappy," were paired with an exciting moment in which many crayon-like inflatables sprang up above the stage. Unlike the others, one of the inflatables originally drooped before proudly expanding further to join them.
Then it came time for "Wake Up" (what else?) and the situation lived up to the song's jubilance, with everyone in the room roaring along.
Do you think we can still be friends? Coachella appears to be glad to be that and more with Arcade Fire, based on tonight's concert.