Thank God the second coming of Springsteen, sponsored by the Church of Finn, has ascended into heaven. It's about time we get someone else seated at the right hand of the Father. If anyone would have requested a requiem by Bruce on his deathbed, Neon Bible would be it. After a solid trip pop opener with "Black Mirror," "Keep the Car Running"'s two chord mandolin opener, driving 2/4 drum beat bring you back to the days when Reagan was seeking reelection and this blogger was one and a half.
Arcade Fire slows it down a little with the title track and immediately brings us to the cathedral with huge organs and a call and response between Win and an impressive string section in "Intervention." After moving through the half 80s pop hit, half AF classic "Black Wave / Bad Vibrations" and dipping (ahem!) in the "Ocean of Noise," "(Antichrist Television Blues)" is literally a (successful) melding of "Born to Run" and "Thunder Road."
While most Springsteen references coin bands as the Boss of a new generation, this reference isn't anything like that. Neon Bible is literally the Boss v2.0. Maybe I'm wrong in this comparison, but before you dismiss this as amateurish, make a playlist with Neon Bible, Born to Run and "Dancing in the Dark," set it on shuffle and just listen...
I'm not saying Arcade Fire is the next Great American Rock Band (mainly because they're from north of the border). Let's just say they've made a Great American Rock Album.
Arcade Fire - No Cars Go
Arcade Fire - The Well and the Lighthouse