Arcade Fire are finally back. The group will be releasing their sixth studio album WE on May 6. It will be the band’s latest collab via Columbia Records. The first single, “The Lightning I, II,” is out with an accompanying music video directed by Emily Kai Bock.
WE was produced by Nigel Godrich, Win Butler and Régine Chassagne. The band recorded it in New Orleans, El Paso, and Mount Desert Island, but their sessions were initially disrupted by the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in the spring of 2020. Win Butler said that the album is the product of “the longest we’ve ever spent writing, uninterrupted, probably ever.” Win and Régine were able to take much of the following year of isolation to explore new musical paths.
The album is set to clock in around 4o minutes, exploring themes of being pulled away from loved ones by outside forces, and the need to overcome those forces. Per the press release, the album is split into two distinct sections — Side “I” which channels the fear and loneliness of isolation, and side “WE,” which expresses the joy and power of reconnection:
Arcade Fire WE tracklisting:
Age of Anxiety I
Age of Anxiety II (Rabbit Hole)
End of the Empire I-IV
The Lightning I, II
Unconditional I (Lookout Kid)
Unconditional II (Race and Religion)