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Scene Turns 40: The 40 Most Memorable Concerts of the Last 40 Years

Looking back over four decades of shows for Scene's 40th anniversary

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Arcade Fire

Beachland Ballroom

March 3, 2008  

At first blush, it seemed odd that a Canadian band was shilling for a U.S. Presidential candidate in Barack Obama. The Montreal band had bypassed Cleveland on its tour behind 2007's buzzworthy Neon Bible, so it was extra special to have these two  abbreviated (but free) shows to get out the vote for the Illinois senator. The concerts were announced only a few days before they took place. After the mad scramble for tickets ended, concertgoers with and without tickets were (literally) left standing out in a cold spring drizzle waiting to get inside. When the faithful finally made it inside, they saw the band work through a set list highlighting their best tunes and an eclectic mix of covers that included David Bowie's "Heroes," John Lennon's "Gimme Some Truth," and Sam Cooke's "Change is Gonna Come." To the chagrin of many, the political overtones were sometimes heavy-handed — frontman Win Butler's between-song banter wasn't exactly veiled. But at the end of the night it was the Arcade Fire more than a presidential candidate that everyone believed in. (Jeremy Willets) 

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