Lorde Breaks Down Her 10 Favorite Arcade Fire Songs

New Zealand pop sensation chats about the best tracks by her "favorite band"

Lorde Illustration, Issue 1209
Illustration by Jody Hewgill with Balvis Rubess
Lorde
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"I feel weird writing this because the people in Arcade Fire are my friends," says Lorde. "It'll be fine, I think. They've been my favorite band since a guy who was kind of mean and kind of my friend put The Suburbs on my computer one day after school. It was a superhot day; my hair was wet from the pool. I was 13. I still remember that day."

1. "Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)" (2004)
This is the best song on Funeral for me, and one of my favorites live – the cracks and anguish in Win [Butler]'s vocal (and that one "Whoo!"), the percussion, the burn of the chords.

2. "Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)" (2004)
This song has such lovely imagery. The fervency in the music really reminds me of the fierce promises you make when you're a kid.

3. "Rebellion (Lies)" (2004)
I got introduced to this song by way of the Letterman performance, which, if you haven't seen, you should. I like how abruptly each section ends; it makes me think of a Broadway show. Will [Butler] always goes fucking mental on this one live.

4. "We Used to Wait" (2010)
Just a perfectly crafted pop song, the contents of which really made sense to me at the time. The "and now we're screaming sing the chorus again" refrain is really great.

5. "Ready to Start" (2010)
I love the melodies.

6. "The Suburbs" and "The Suburbs (Continued)" (2010)
Nothing has ever colored in suburban life for me more vividly than this. I don't think I need to say anything about this song – it's all there.

7. "Flashbulb Eyes" (2013)
I've gotten really into this song by way of seeing the band live – the bubbly, percussive reggae kind of feel and the simple lyrics make it superfun.

8. "Normal Person" (2013)
I love the randomness of this song on Reflektor: a squelchy rock song in a really groovy album. One of AF's most visited lyrical themes – cool-people contempt – executed really well.

9. "Rococo" (2010)
The first AF song I got into. I have a definite memory of being wind-swept at the bus stop with this one.

10. "Afterlife" (2013)
I think this is a perfect song. It's groovy and fun and sad and happy and intense, and the kind of song that seems like it was easy to write but probably took forever. The lyric is so succinct and says so much, and when I die I want someone to put my body in a funeral parlor so you have to kiss my dead lips, Sopranos-style, and I want this song on loop. And there has to be a disco ball.

From The Archives Issue 1209: May 22, 2014
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