LIVE, IN PHOTOS: Arcade Fire Celebrates Halloween At The Hollywood Palladium
By Christian Koons on November 1, 2013
Arcade Fire (The Reflektors)
Los Angeles, CA
October 31, 2013
A few hours before Arcade Fire’s Halloween show last night at the Palladium, the venue tweeted (at the band’s request) that dressing up in either costume or formal wear was mandatory for entry. While this didn’t turn out to be entirely true—as evidenced by the few un-festive and plainly-dressed that were let inside—most of the attendees took the mandate seriously, so the long line that zigzagged out from the venue’s entrance was diverse and vibrant, to say the least—an anything-goes, no-judgment human-zoo of craft supplies and creativity, to say the most.
“If I’ve ever seen a bunch of freakier weirdoes, I’m not sure,” Arcade Fire frontman Win Butler said halfway through the set to a roar of proud applause. “All the freaky weirdoes move to LA and have freaky weirdo kids. Then they’re the normal ones.” And on cue the band leapt right into Reflektor’s “Normal Person,” an in-your-face rock anthem that’s maybe the first song in Arcade Fire’s catalog to produce a collective audience headbang.
The night began with a dramatic curtain drop right on sync with the first drum fill of Reflektor’s title track. Butler took the stage looking like Picasso’s reinterpretation of Beetlejuice with a swirled black and white suit coat and a neon orange Elephant Man mask. A curtain of reflective prisms threw colored light on the band from behind as they finished the set’s opener. “My grandpa played here once,” said Butler. “I can feel the spirits.”
Quick on the heels of “Reflektor” came “Neighborhood #3 (Power Out),” a fan-favorite from Arcade Fire’s debut LP Funeral that they usually save for the end of their sets. But fans of their earlier material may have felt a bit slighted overall, as the set was almost entirely comprised of their latest record. “Haiti” was the only other Funeral track, “Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains),” which closed out the night, was the sole representative of The Suburbs, and Neon Bible was absent entirely. Though it could be argued that more epic, emotional tracks like “Intervention,” “Keep the Car Running,” and “Wake Up” would have been at odds with the dance-oriented Reflektor songs and the with celebratory spirit of the night.
Other highlights include a rare performance of “Headlights Look Like Diamonds” from the band’s first EP, a cover of Devo’s “Uncontrollable Urge,” and a brief nod to the late Lou Reed at the end of “Afterlife” when Butler sang the chorus of The Velvet Underground’s “Beginning to See the Light.”
Before the band left the stage, Butler encouraged the audience to stick around. “We’re gonna come out and dance with you guys,” he said. “Let’s have a party.”
Most surprisingly prevalent costume: The Big Lebowski (I saw at least four)
Most annoying costume: The big fluffy sheep right in front of me
Most obvious costume: Waldo (...c’mon, man)
Most topical costume: Lorde (or was it really her?)
Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)
Joan of Arc
You Already Know
It’s Never Over (Oh Orpheus)
Headlights Look Like Diamonds
Uncontrollable Urge (Devo Cover)
Here Comes the Night Time
Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)