Arcade Fire are slated to headline Voodoo Festival tonight in New Orleans, but they played a small, intimate show preceding their massive set last night at one of the Secondline Stages.
Nola.com reports that attendees were simply told to show up at the Secondline stage around 9 PM, and their phones were confiscated before heading inside. Once in the party, which was decked out in Halloween decorations, the band eventually played for less than 200 people at the private show — but not before frontman Win Butler DJ-ed and his fellow band members poured wine for the guests themselves.
Butler teased the band’s fifth album, the follow-up to 2013’s Reflektor, in a recent Reddit AMA, citing next spring as the likely release date. Last night confirmed that scheduling seems to be on track. Following a set from openers, the Pinettes Brass Band, the band played multiple new songs for the small, selective audience. The total set list was 14 songs long, and included an interpolation of the Ghostbusters theme song with new lyrics about “a clown living in a tower in the sky.”
The Nola.com reporter has several descriptive phrases for what she heard: “a storm of dynamic, danceable rock. The new music, driven by percussive-heavy beats with a flavor of disco, had a sharp focus on weighty topics.” Hmmm. Hopefully they play more new songs tonight so we can get a little better grasp on what direction the new album is going in.
The band originated in Montreal, but following Reflektor‘s release in 2013, Butler and his wife Regine Chassagne, who is also a member of Arcade Fire, moved down to New Orleans and began spending most of their time there. Since I’ve been in New Orleans for the festival this weekend, multiple people have cited the powerful second line the band held for David Bowie earlier this year.