Here’s What We Know About Arcade Fire’s New Album Everything Now
Arcade Fire’s new album Everything Now is out July 28 via Columbia. It’s the first release since 2013’s Reflektor and the buildup has been nothing short of a spectacle, complete with cereal box teasers and more than one fidget spinner dispute. Ahead of its release, here’s everything we know about the record.
They like teasers
In May, a short video appeared on the fan blog Arcade Fire Tube featuring a globe logo, the word “Now” and the initials “EN.” Later that day, a gritty record store video of a new song titled “Everything Now” founds its way online and though pulled almost immediately, hinted at a new ABBA-esque disco sound from the band. Just days after, the band’s website redirected to a livestream at live.everythingnow.com, complete with the EN globe from before. From there, the band shared a proper album announcement, which included the music video for “Everything Now” and word of an upcoming North American tour.
If that weren’t enough, the band teased their second single with another dizzying array of strange tactics. On June 13, the band shared a teaser for their new single called “Creature Comfort” on Facebook. The clip advertised a 100% marshmallow breakfast cereal that “contains methylphenidate” (the active ingredient in Ritalin). The band later hid boxes of the cereal throughout Dublin, offering fans who tracked down the boxes admittance to an afterparty following their performance at Dublin’s Malahide Castle. The teaser was soon followed by the “Creature Comfort” video, which included lots of fake pop-up trivia onscreen, eventually spiraling into advertisements for a number of fake products in connection with the album.
They might be the puppets of a manipulative corporation
With the teaser for their second single “Creature Comfort,” the band included a link to a Facebook page for the “Everything Now Content Division,” a “finance company” and alleged “subsidiary” of the “Everything Now Corporation.” When the “Creature Comfort” video dropped in full, the band shared on their own Facebook that they had entered a “360 degree arrangement” with Everything Now Corp. Under this arrangement, the band would be “committed to promoting their music aggressively,” while “the marketing and promotion expertise brought to the table by Everything Now Corp would be acknowledged and respected.”
Things must’ve soured as the campaign moved forward, as the post cites that it has “become more apparent that the band is unwilling to come to the table in good faith and consider every angle and offer, instead giving blanket refusals to many of [Everything Now Corp’s] reasonable requests.” The corporation then claimed that they were taking over Arcade Fire’s social media channels to “bring you some excellent promotional material that the band was unwilling to share.”
The album is 13 songs long
On June 3, the @EverythingNowCo Twitter account began tweeting a series of anagrams of each track on the release. Fans on the Arcade Fire subreddit were quick to untangle the album’s oddly redundant tracklisting, which allegedly includes 3 versions of “Everything Now” and 2 versions of “Infinite Content,” as well as the single “Creature Comfort,” which has since been unveiled in full. The track list was later confirmed by the band.
— Arcade Fire (@arcadefire) June 28, 2017
The album’s been in the works since at least 2015
In an September 2015 interview with NME, Will Butler said the record was in its early stages. “We’re all itching to play music together and start recording things,” he said. “We’re basically in the demo and play together phase, and historically that’s led to realizing that, surprisingly, we’re 30 per cent into a record, so we’ll see if that happens.”
Also: “It’s a bit different this time because everyone’s older and fatter and lazier, so it might take longer, but we’re playing music together. Win and Regine got a place in New Orleans so I think we’ll spend some time there, because why wouldn’t you? But apart from that we’re in the old HQ. We’re not terribly good at schedules and luckily we’re in a position where no-one can ever tell us what to do, so it’s good.” Nearly two years have passed since those comments, so the “longer” party is certainly correct.
The album art doesn’t feature the band
Like many of Arcade Fire’s past releases, the album artwork doesn’t feature the band. Instead, it includes a photo of their live.everythingnow.com billboard, captioned with the now-official title Everything Now.
They’ve already performed “Signs of Life” live, and a video might be coming soon
Earlier today, the band teased a video for the song “Signs of Life” on Twitter. The clip slows to reveal the date “6/30/17,” possibly the release date of the single or video. The band performed the song live at their Scunthorpe, England show earlier this month.
— Arcade Fire tube (@ArcadeFiretube) June 7, 2017
The band has bid farewell to “indie” rock
After releasing four albums on the North Carolina indie Merge, the band have now signed a two-album deal with the Sony-owned Columbia Records. (2013’s Reflektor was released in conjunction with Capitol, itself a subsidiary of Universal.) According to sources at Variety, Universal Music Group also bid on continuing their relationship with the beloved band.