There's an adage they teach you in school — they call it Betteridge's Law of Headlines — that states "any headline which ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no." So with that in mind, the internet is asking, Is Arcade Fire's new album called Reflektor? Some people certainly hope so. Here's what we know.
Over the past weekend, at the Lollapalooza and Osheaga festivals in Chicago and Montreal, respectively, videos of an artist hand-drawing the word "REFLEKTOR" onto a creepy-looking ritualistic symbol were broadcast before some sets. Here is a video:
If that isn't conspiracy theory-worthy enough, the plot thickens with the discovery of an Instagram account, reflektor, posting the same symbol on buildings all around the world.
And then of course, there's even a website - thereflektors.com. Not reflektor but the reflektors. Okay.
So what does this have to do with Arcade Fire? Nothing really. Other than the fact that we know they have an album out soon, and that the music on the "REFLEKTOR" video vaguely sounds like what could be the big swell before an epic AF breakdown, it all seems like a bit of a reach. So, yeah, color us skeptical. The part that specifically loses us is the (really cool looking and interesting) graffiti. The implication here is that a world-famous, chart-topping — and lets face it, generally very friendly and respectful — band like Arcade Fire is using actual defacement of property as a guerrilla/viral marketing tactic to hype a new album. Though it should be pointed out that in a lot of the photos, the "REFLEKTOR" insignia does appear to be written in chalk.
We will admit, however, that nothing makes an album feel like an event like an interesting marketing campaign. This year alone Daft Punk, Kanye West and Jay Z took the idea of promoting an album to different extremes. Daft Punk made us appreciate the album's artistry way before we heard a single song with slick oral history-style videos. Kanye West teased us with live performances and viral videos while maintaining an explicitly anti-marketing stance. And Jay Z used one of the world's leading tech giants to market his album for him, while banking pre-release millions for himself.
We're skeptical, but like everyone else, we want it to be true because more than anything, a new AF album is an exciting proposition.
Here are the actual facts concerning the new Arcade Fire album: it will be out October 29, and LCD Soundsystem'sJames Murphy produced the record - and he can't stop gushing about it.