Will there ever be another album like Funeral? Sounds silly considering the second half of this decade has seen plenty of bands establish nice careers by ripping off the communal euphoria that Arcade Fire made fresh after four years of rock records that boasted metropolitan chic, emotional austerity, or lyrical removal– the music was amazing, but it was all kind of a downer. It’s debatable that Funeral itself is even original– considering they share a label, love of archaic brass and string instruments, and an undeniable ability to wring life affirmation in the face of personal tragedy, it might just be a crossover version of Neutral Milk Hotel’s In the Aeroplane Over the Sea.
But besides being a turning point for indie rock, Funeral was one for the indie communityas well. Whether it’s due to increasingly fractious listening habits or the increased ability for dissenters to be heard, Funeral keeps on feeling like the last of its kind, an indie record that sounded capable of conquering the universe and then going on to do just that. The consensus hyperbole that met Funeral resulted in any record that threatened to reach that level becoming met with severe scrutiny or even outright derision. And still, we wonder if there will ever be anything quite like Funeral–something tells me that as music becomes even more readily available to us in the next decade, we’ll still go through it all in the hopes we can find something with the unifying force and astounding emotional payload that only albums like Funeral can provide. –Ian Cohen / Pitchfork.com