Record Label: Merge Records
Arcade Fire's fourth full length record, Reflektor, is a double 180-gram LP packaged in a gatefold jacket printed on rainbow holographic board.
With a penchant for majestic, theatrical, bombastic anthems, Montreal's Arcade Fire has amassed a broad loyal following without compromising their singular artistic vision. Reflektor is the band's highly anticipated fourth full-length record and follow-up to the 2011 Grammy winning Album of the Year, The Suburbs.
Influenced by trips to Haiti and Jamaica, and lyrically inspired by the 1959 film Black Orpheus and Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard's essay, The Present Age, the epic 15-track double album was produced by the band, LCD Soundsystem mastermind James Murphy and longtime collaborator Markus Dravs and features guest vocals by David Bowie on the title track.
"On The Suburbs we said that Depeche Mode and Neil Young were approximate poles of the album, and this album too has poles," explained Will Butler to The Guardian. "One of those poles was the Haitian rhythms. Synth string drones is another."
Frontman Win Butler on Reflektor to BBC Radio 1's Zane Lowe: "It's longer than [2010 album] 'The Suburbs' – it's a double record – mostly down to the fact that the songs are a lot longer. I mean, 'Reflektor' is seven-and-a-half, there's another couple of seven-minute songs on the record and so it made more sense to stretch it out to two records with two distinct sides. It's more of a classic double LP vibe where you have to flip the side and it takes you to a different place."
He adds, "The joy of making music in 2013 is that you're allowed to like the Sex Pistols and ABBA and it's fine. You can like '90s hip-hop, you can like - which even when I was a kid that wasn't the case - you liked grunge or you liked this. To me the world doesn't work that way anymore, it's like such an explosion, and anything that's good kind of rises to the top. And we kind of want to make music that respects that. It's like a mash-up of like Studio 54 and Haitian voodoo music and I think it's a really beautiful thing about music now."
"Arcade Fire's third album, 2010's The Suburbs, was urgent and clear, a record about dreams and escape, gassed with classic-rock punch. It was a Number One hit and rightly won a Grammy for Album of the Year...Reflektor is even better, for this reason: the jarring, charging union of Murphy's modern-dance acumen and post-punk sabotage with Arcade Fire's natural gallop and ease with Caribbean rhythm.
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Joseph Abajian (DJ Jab) founded Fat Beats in 1994 with nothing more than a shoestring budget and an earnest obsession with the music, the culture, and the brotherhood of New York’s burgeoning rap scene. What began as a simple vinyl shop in Manhattan’s Lower East Side quickly became an integral hub for artists, both aspiring and established, to convene and collaborate on new projects. Joseph’s timing couldn’t have been more impeccable. When the 90’s cultural zeitgeist – and, in turn, the music industry establishment – chose hip-hop as its new arbiter of cool.
International tourists and touring artists alike flocked to Fat Beats for rare vinyl, kindred spirits, and exclusive in-store performances from Jay Z, Eminem, Gang Starr, Outkast, Slum Village, Mos Def, and more. One thing was clear: the Fat Beats phenomenon could no longer be contained in a single basement shop.
In the late nineties, Abajian proceeded to open new stores in Amsterdam, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. He further expanded the company’s profile to include global distribution and record label branches. Distribution has since proven to be the company’s strongest and most enduring enterprise. Today Fat Beats Distribution stands poised as one of the country’s pre-eminent distributors of vinyl & specialty item records: a proud survivor in an industry now famous for its mortality rate. Despite market fluctuations, technology innovations, and stylistic revolutions, Fat Beats has remained steadfast in its commitment to the timeless vinyl format and to the loyal community who keeps it spinning.
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