Neon Bible

  • Record Label: Merge
  • Release Date: Mar 6, 2007
User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 838 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 27 out of 838

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  1. BrianD.
    Nov 7, 2007
    5
    Take 3 steps forward. Then take 6 steps backwards and drop a deuce where you stand. That's what Arcade Fire did in releasing this album as the follow up to Funeral.
  2. SylvioM
    Mar 7, 2007
    4
    So far the worst album them.
  3. danw
    Oct 1, 2007
    5
    This album has to rate as one of the biggest disappointments I've experienced. Funeral had an effortless mystery and splendour that was completely exhilarating but Neon Bible makes me feel like I've been fooled. It's trite and overcooked - a hollow shell in comparison. It probably isn't a terrible album - it's just that it's not a patch on Funeral and This album has to rate as one of the biggest disappointments I've experienced. Funeral had an effortless mystery and splendour that was completely exhilarating but Neon Bible makes me feel like I've been fooled. It's trite and overcooked - a hollow shell in comparison. It probably isn't a terrible album - it's just that it's not a patch on Funeral and I've really tried to give it a chance. Expand
  4. anonymousy
    Oct 22, 2007
    5
    Not bad but not that great.
  5. madsl
    Mar 12, 2007
    5
    somehow the magic is gone even though its hard to pinpoint exactly what makes this a less fulfilling experience than its famed predecessor. Well maybe the songs just aren't strong enough...only No Cars Go and Keep the Car Running truly stand out, while the title track and My Body is a Cage are downright tedious. The lyrics are really tepid teenage angst musings and reek of somehow the magic is gone even though its hard to pinpoint exactly what makes this a less fulfilling experience than its famed predecessor. Well maybe the songs just aren't strong enough...only No Cars Go and Keep the Car Running truly stand out, while the title track and My Body is a Cage are downright tedious. The lyrics are really tepid teenage angst musings and reek of ill-conceived self-importance. The word, bloated, springs to mind... Expand
  6. PatS.
    Mar 4, 2007
    5
    Their lyrics are clumsy and obvious. More ambiguity needed, pronto.
  7. MarcG
    Mar 5, 2007
    6
    such a disappointment...
  8. JimD
    Mar 6, 2007
    6
    What is someone looking for the deffinative online review of Neon Bible to do? Some praise the Arcade Fire
  9. KrisB
    Mar 6, 2007
    4
    I love this band, but I have to say that on this one it really seems like they run out of steam. No Cars go is the best track on here, which sucks as it's a re-recording of a track they put out 4 years ago. + if you are looking to buy this, just buythe regular edition. All that you get woth the Special edition are 2 crappy stapled together flickbooks and a hologram. Not really worth I love this band, but I have to say that on this one it really seems like they run out of steam. No Cars go is the best track on here, which sucks as it's a re-recording of a track they put out 4 years ago. + if you are looking to buy this, just buythe regular edition. All that you get woth the Special edition are 2 crappy stapled together flickbooks and a hologram. Not really worth the extra $7. Expand
  10. MattD.
    Mar 7, 2007
    6
    I just didn't get Funeral like others did, and still don't see what the big deal about Neon Bible is. Yes, the songs are given a little more room, but there's still a cinematic quality that works against them. It's like they try too hard to be hip and give the critics what they want. Concentrate more on developing the songs.
  11. wolfbag
    Apr 2, 2007
    5
    Am I allowed to say this? Well...here goes...I thnik this is a pretty weak album compared to Funeral. It sounds like Arcade Fire doing Arcade Fire covers, i.e. a bit formulaic and overly dramatic, plus there's a lot of cringeworthy lyrics. The only surprising bit is the Springsteen impression, but if I wanted that I would have bought one of his own albums. There, I said it.
  12. DavidF.
    Dec 5, 2007
    6
    If this record came out before Funeral people would not have thought nearly as highly of it. For me, it lacks the energy it's predecessor has. The album is okay, but nothing special.
  13. TylerC
    Feb 24, 2007
    4
    I loved Funeral But this is just plain boring to me. The songs just dont sound very good to me aside from a couple of songs (neon bible, and keep the car running are good). the rest is just plain not very interesting music.
  14. ChemaP
    Mar 1, 2007
    6
    Only an OK album, specially when compared with such a masterpiece as Funeral. It seems a bit overproduced, with too many instruments cramped into every song (from mariachi trumpets to a church organ), as if the storm of sound will serve to disguise the lack of inspiration. At its best (Intervention, No Cars Go), it doesn't even comes close to the explosion of joy and emotion that was Only an OK album, specially when compared with such a masterpiece as Funeral. It seems a bit overproduced, with too many instruments cramped into every song (from mariachi trumpets to a church organ), as if the storm of sound will serve to disguise the lack of inspiration. At its best (Intervention, No Cars Go), it doesn't even comes close to the explosion of joy and emotion that was Funeral. At its worst (Black Wave/Bad Vibrations, Ocean Of Noise), it sounds like a couple of bad covers of Pink Floyd, or a christmas carol album sung by Paul Young (never a good thing to be compared to). Expand
  15. Stafford
    Mar 1, 2007
    4
    What to say, what to say. To be honest, I really did want to like this album. Although suffering production wise, I thought Funeral was an amazingly well done. It was a beautiful and lush soundscape filled to the brim with ideas. Songs would careen wildly, often fitting a few great ideas into one pop length statement. As for Neon Bible, all I can say is this: What happened? The production What to say, what to say. To be honest, I really did want to like this album. Although suffering production wise, I thought Funeral was an amazingly well done. It was a beautiful and lush soundscape filled to the brim with ideas. Songs would careen wildly, often fitting a few great ideas into one pop length statement. As for Neon Bible, all I can say is this: What happened? The production has been beefed up, thats for sure, but the album feels like the process that went into Funeral was reversed. From my first encounter with the band, a pre-Funeral opening spot for The Unicorns, it was clear that this was a little band trying to do big things. A ragtag group of kids making weird ELO-esque pop. With the Neon Bible however, it sounds like they wrote a bunch of intense little songs and then realized they had all this money left over to dump a bucket of instruments and effects all over it. The songs seem to begin and end without ever reall going anywhere. As a brief example I would use "Keep the Car Running." The entirety of the song feels like what would have been simply the beginning of a song on Funeral, but it never takes off. The songs all just chug along nicely with one very basic idea. But too much of this chugging, or more aptly plodding, makes for a very boring album. It sounds wonderful, but the album never really soars like Funeral did. I welcome the idea of switching up your sound, but simply doing this does not a positive review make. As a side, i find the inclusion of "No Cars Go" absolutely befuddling. The new version sounds absolutely fantastic, far surpassing the original. As much as I appreciate it, I don't understand why it was put on here, perhaps it was more fitting as a B-side. The real problem with including it is the fact that it underscores how much the rest of the album is lacking in its song construction. It puts together the wonderful new production and their more crafty form of songwriting. If only the good production and lyrical ability synched up with the rest of the band, then it would have been an absolutely amazing album. Expand
  16. DerekH
    Mar 14, 2007
    6
    This is an album of moments, events, and heterotopic spaces. Unfortunately, the band's approach is hindered in some tracks by static forms; and in others by movement/s which lose their relation to time and form. A great album--if it were by any band other than Arcade Fire.
  17. JacksonG
    Mar 2, 2007
    5
    How could you not be disappointed after Funeral? Decent, but I've heard much much better albums this year alone.
  18. JayP
    Mar 23, 2007
    6
    I really love Funeral, but i've listened to this a couple of times and I just don't get excited. For the most part it's just got too many slow songs for me and the production was really boring and predicable - enough with the violins. The subject matter is just so cliche at this point as well. oooooh religion and war are bad....we get it. A few of the songs are pretty good. I really love Funeral, but i've listened to this a couple of times and I just don't get excited. For the most part it's just got too many slow songs for me and the production was really boring and predicable - enough with the violins. The subject matter is just so cliche at this point as well. oooooh religion and war are bad....we get it. A few of the songs are pretty good. The songs on Funeral were about something so under explored and pondered in spite of the fact that death and loss is something all of us are surrounded with. Expand
  19. MichaelS
    Mar 2, 2007
    6
    Looks like people are suffering from a Radiohead syndrome with Arcade Fire now, trying way hard to like whatever they make just because they are Arcade Fire. There are 4 strong tracks on the album, but none of them reach the heights of Funeral. The rest of the album ranges from mediocre to unlistenable to me because of its bizzare broadway-musical-like quality. Overall, an extremely Looks like people are suffering from a Radiohead syndrome with Arcade Fire now, trying way hard to like whatever they make just because they are Arcade Fire. There are 4 strong tracks on the album, but none of them reach the heights of Funeral. The rest of the album ranges from mediocre to unlistenable to me because of its bizzare broadway-musical-like quality. Overall, an extremely mediocre followup. Expand
  20. Erics.
    Mar 31, 2007
    5
    Overrated.
  21. Marcius
    Mar 5, 2007
    6
    Michael S. said it all.
  22. JonathanE
    Mar 5, 2007
    5
    This album is getting acclaim simply because it's the Arcade Fire. As a previous review said, they are suffering from Radiohead syndrome where everything they do is considered genius even if it isn't that great. This album is simply nowhere near as good as "Funeral" and a definite sophomore slump. The songs have a lack of hooks and aren't very memorable. They even resort to This album is getting acclaim simply because it's the Arcade Fire. As a previous review said, they are suffering from Radiohead syndrome where everything they do is considered genius even if it isn't that great. This album is simply nowhere near as good as "Funeral" and a definite sophomore slump. The songs have a lack of hooks and aren't very memorable. They even resort to re-recording one of their earlier songs "No Cars Go" seemingly only because it's catchy and they obviously couldn't come up with anything else. Expand
  23. hooner
    Apr 25, 2007
    5
    Sounds like it was recorded in a shed! NOT the best band of all time, I wish you people would get some perspective and stop herelding evry new band the best ever.
  24. JordanK
    Jun 13, 2007
    5
    I appreciate what they're trying to do and what they stand for. But I can't stand their songwriting. The musical ideas are simple and repetitive; sometimes they're dressed up enough so that it doesn't matter how monotonous the chordal and melodic structure are (this was done really well in Funeral), but in this album, no arrangement, no matter how decorative, could I appreciate what they're trying to do and what they stand for. But I can't stand their songwriting. The musical ideas are simple and repetitive; sometimes they're dressed up enough so that it doesn't matter how monotonous the chordal and melodic structure are (this was done really well in Funeral), but in this album, no arrangement, no matter how decorative, could make these musical ideas work. It's just too repetitive. Maybe half the songs on the album could stand with a simpler arrangement. It's just too repetitive. The ornaments look pretty, but they're bringing down the branches of the tree. It's just too repetitive. It's just too repetitive. Expand
  25. JayK
    Jul 20, 2007
    5
    Solid enough form the Canadians but not a patch on Funeral. Interventions is really good but what the hell is it about?Thought war,religion but try as I might it just doesn't make coherent sense.No cars go great but heard it before.Cant remember any of the other song. I recommend that people move on...they've had their 15 mins..give bands like menomna your undivided attentation Solid enough form the Canadians but not a patch on Funeral. Interventions is really good but what the hell is it about?Thought war,religion but try as I might it just doesn't make coherent sense.No cars go great but heard it before.Cant remember any of the other song. I recommend that people move on...they've had their 15 mins..give bands like menomna your undivided attentation and leave commerical sell-outs(Its not their fault I know just whats happens) to entertain the dumb masses!! Expand
  26. raelt
    Feb 20, 2007
    6
    Quite disapponting, but yet decent enough so that most critics will call it a masterpiece... I'll probably put it down in few days and go back to listening Funeral
  27. JohnnyS
    Mar 12, 2007
    5
    Another average release from a mediocre band. There is simply a total lack of hooks or really anything solid to keep you coming back. No Cars Go is a good track though, if a little U2-ish.
  28. JonP
    Mar 13, 2007
    5
    It must be nice to be a critically acclaimed band. The first album is at least an 8, while this languishes in the 5-6 range and yet it gets glowing reviews. It's boring. There is no Power Out. There is no Haiti. A colossal disappointment.
  29. LS
    Mar 15, 2007
    5
    Not great, not bad
  30. EvanS
    Mar 17, 2007
    5
    A huge fan of Funeral, I just don't get this album. The band pulls the same rally cry intended to put you on your feet but left me scratching my head. Why must every song on this album end sound like a potential theme song for the Olympics? Pure cheese. They can do better.
  31. JosephA
    Mar 26, 2007
    6
    This is a really good album, but the production is piss poor. Everything is covered by everything else leaving little room for any of the instrumentation to shine. The lyrics are great and the arrangements and songwriting as well. But unfortunately, its all very cramped and mono for such colorful instrumentation. A shame really.
  32. TrentN
    Mar 28, 2007
    6
    Its a good album but i dont belive the band well ever put out anything as good a Funeral. The prduction on this album is really poor compared to the last one.
  33. RobJ.
    Mar 3, 2007
    5
    This isn't a bad record, but it seems like they're channeling Bruce Springsteen on this one much more than the Talking Heads or the Pixies. Disappointing compared to Funeral.
  34. RichardP
    Mar 3, 2007
    6
    Some great songs. Some really not great songs. But let's avoid hyperboles like "best band ever". That just shows how few bands you've listened to.
  35. JakeM
    Mar 6, 2007
    4
    Not even close to 'Funeral'. The production fits in well with the new 'Springstein/U2' feel of their music. Stadium rock. Listening to their albums side by side reveal how far they've plummeted into the music industry.
  36. RobbieC
    Mar 8, 2007
    6
    I feel luke warm about this album. Perhaps my expectations were too high. I may have to spend more time with it, but so far, I think Neon Bible is over-rated and over-hyped. Funeral was rich in places that don't exist on this album. The best track on here is No Cars Go... and that's disappointing... that track was already great on their eponymous debut!
  37. MikeA
    May 29, 2007
    6
    I just don't understand the hype over this band. This disc, like their debut is interesting, but not deserving of the accolades it seems to be getting.
  38. AndrewC.
    Jun 5, 2007
    6
    This album is overrated. It's better than Funeral, but it's not that special. I particularly enjoy two tracks off the album - "Where no cars go" which is a rip off of Prefab Sprout's King Of Rock n' Roll, and Antichrist Television Blues, which is a great tribute to Bruce Springsteen.
  39. SteveO.
    Sep 25, 2007
    4
    I feel like I'm not in the cool club here. I bought this hoping for something earth shattering and found it only average - in fact from the first song I didn't like it. The comparison is less Talking Heads art rock and more Black 47 via Springsteen, but without the heart to back up the social commentary.
  40. BobBob
    Feb 24, 2008
    6
    I don't get this albums high praise. The song Neon Bible just seems slow and unmoving. I like the no Cars Go song, but what else. For new stuff this year give me Of Montreal or LCD.
  41. RichK.
    Apr 11, 2008
    6
    The album, I felt was so overrated. There are so many other albums that exceeded to be considered as the best album of the year.
  42. Stevio
    Apr 28, 2008
    4
    Completely over-rated. Some original sounds but clumsy adolescent lyrics which are embarrassing to listen to.
  43. KlausV
    May 27, 2008
    6
    The intro Black Mirror and title track are the only bright spots on this album, the rest is forgettable blackness.
  44. RJM.
    Nov 10, 2007
    4
    stupid stupid stupid. vacuous social commentary. even worse production. funeral had a few good moments; this has fewer.
  45. JimH
    Dec 28, 2007
    6
    Disappointingly mundane follow-up that makes me think that I overestimated its predecessor. This has some good songs toward the end but this seems like a band that's already losing momentum.
  46. T.Speaker
    Feb 15, 2007
    6
    It's really too bad that "Neon Bible" is going to garner critical acclaim simply because it's from the Arcade Fire. This is a decent album, but some tracks are far too repetitious (My Body is a Cage), and others don't take their potent melodies anywhere (Keep the Car Running). Thankfully, songs like "Intervention" and "Black Waves/Bad Vibrations" save the record from mediocrity.
  47. ScottW
    Mar 16, 2007
    5
    What happened to the Arcade Fire? They've abandoned their signature sound from the EP and Funeral just to sound gloomy and depressed. This album is average except for the song "No Cars Go" which is originally on the EP. The melodies are bland and Regine's voice sounds shrill and discordant, unlike her eerie and beautiful singing on Funeral. I think people are pretending the What happened to the Arcade Fire? They've abandoned their signature sound from the EP and Funeral just to sound gloomy and depressed. This album is average except for the song "No Cars Go" which is originally on the EP. The melodies are bland and Regine's voice sounds shrill and discordant, unlike her eerie and beautiful singing on Funeral. I think people are pretending the album is better than it really is because they don't want to sacrifice their view of the Arcade Fire as THE great band of the century. Expand
  48. dana
    Mar 23, 2007
    6
    Lumpen. These guys seem to be the most acclaimed band going at the moment which is a great shame to older North American indie bands who have blazed trails for 15/20 years to go virtually unrecognized and have these guys take the plaudits. Indie music died in 2004, the niche is being exploited. Thing is,the music isn't so bad but like Coldplay it's horribly average and been done Lumpen. These guys seem to be the most acclaimed band going at the moment which is a great shame to older North American indie bands who have blazed trails for 15/20 years to go virtually unrecognized and have these guys take the plaudits. Indie music died in 2004, the niche is being exploited. Thing is,the music isn't so bad but like Coldplay it's horribly average and been done better before. Don't believe the hype. Expand
  49. tbone
    Apr 29, 2007
    4
    Ugg. So many bad things to say. Like Destroyer and New Pornographers, you gotta either love em or hate em. I don't buy the schtick. barely veiled ripoffs of better artists. Too many gimicks. Overly bombastic. Pam Anderson remains the best thing to come out of Canada by alot.
  50. J.B.
    Jul 24, 2007
    5
    Solid descibes it best; over-hyped - yes; boring - no
  51. HollisG.
    Aug 16, 2007
    6
    Good album, but I feel like Arcade Fire expanded on and explored all the things about them that I didn't really dig, rather than move in a more daring, explosive direction. I wanted to love this album, I really did. But I suppose the final test is that I really just don't listen to it that much.
  52. Jan 21, 2013
    6
    I consider myself an Arcade Fire fan but Neon Bible just lacks the amount of variety present on Funeral and The Suburbs. Neon Bible does have impressive orchestration especially in the new rendition of No Cars Go. But overall this album is lacking in songs that pop out and lacks the amazing variety that their other two albums have.
  53. Aug 16, 2013
    6
    Arcade Fire, trying to outshine Funeral, have created a melodramatic, overdone work. It has some good songs but just doesn't have the heart of Funeral.
Metascore
87

Universal acclaim - based on 46 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 43 out of 46
  2. Negative: 0 out of 46
  1. So, Funeral was by no means a fluke. The Arcade Fire are unquestionably the real deal. And to prove it they’ve now thrown in another contender for ‘best record of the decade’.
  2. The Canadian septet are the greatest art rock group since Talking Heads stopped making sense.
  3. Alternative Press
    80
    While devotees of Funeral... will surely enjoy Neon Bible, the album does have a decidedly different feel than its predecessor--mainly, there seems to be less of an emphasis on choruses. [Apr 2007, p.182]