Arcade Fire dropped their highly anticipated sixth studio album, We, at midnight on Friday (May 6), just one day before the band is set to take the stage as the musical guests of Saturday Night Live.
The album marks their first in five years, following 2017’s Everything Now. “We’s cathartic journey follows a definable arc from darkness into light over the course of seven songs divided into two distinct sides — Side ‘I’ channeling the fear and loneliness of isolation, and Side ‘We’ expressing the joy and power of reconnection,” the band previously wrote of the album in a press release.
We features the previously released song, “The Lightning I, II.” The band has seen three albums (2010’s The Suburbs, 2013’s Reflektor and 2017’s Everything Now) peak at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, and a fourth (2007’s Neon Bible) reach No. 2.
The album also comes following news that longtime member Will Butler will be leaving the band. “Hi friends — I’ve left Arcade Fire,” Butler — who’s the younger brother of frontman Win Butler and has been a part of Arcade Fire since the group’s debut full-length album, Funeral — announced in a tweet on March 19. “I left at the end of last year, after the new record was complete. There was no acute reason beyond that I’ve changed — and the band has changed — over the last almost 20 years. Time for new things.”
“I’m working on a new record; booking some shows this summer,” his statement continued. “I’m working on music for a David Adjmi play (which is so good). A few other projects percolating.”
Listen to We in full below.