Arcade Fire recently wrapped up their long, cover song-heavy Reflektor world tour, but before they said goodbye to the road, the group’s Régine Chassagne and brothers Win and Will Butler chatted with CBS Sunday Morning for an introductory profile on the Grammy Album of the Year-winning band that still has people asking “Who is Arcade Fire?” While CBS Sunday Morning hasn’t posted the complete Arcade Fire segment, the show did share three web extras that feature the Butler brothers talking about performing together growing up, the emphasis they put on the connection with their live audience and Chassagne’s unlikely singing debut (via Pitchfork).
“When I was younger, there was a lot of the shoegazing, indie band thing when you play and look down. I think from the beginning, we would try and connect with an audience,” Butler says of band’s crowd-friendly gigs. “And I think we’ve allowed, as the circumstances changed, we’ve always tried to get our head around that original idea of how we used to play and how to have that affect. We play really hard. A lot of people do that but we… it’s like full-on.” During their last North American trek, Arcade Fire spiced up all their concerts by learning and then performing a geographically inspired cover song for each stop, which demonstrates the extra effort they put into their gigs.
Win also drops some music history on CBS Sunday Morning: “David Bowie was a mime before he was a musician.” As for when the Butler brothers began making music together, Win said, “My mom would do concerts and we’d play together. When I went to boarding school, when I came home, we’d play together. Will was in cover bands, I was in cover bands.”
Chassagne also talked about an early, pre-Arcade Fire music job she had: Singing in the refrigerated aisle of a grocery store. “It’s 8 a.m., the radio is on, I’m singing bossa nova and people just come in with their carts and just keep going,” the multi-instrumentalist says. “The next day I had a cold because I was in a summer dress… So I asked to be moved. So then they move me in the front, near the fish.” It wasn’t all bad, however: Chassagne reveals that her performance was so good, it made an old Portuguese man cry.