Arcade Fire Fans "Reflekt" Band's Appeal at Cactus Party
Who on earth would line up at a record store on a Monday night to buy a single that had leaked onto the Internet hours beforehand? Especially when the Texans' season opener was about to start?
Photos by Jim Bricker All in the Family: Arcade Fire fans Bob, Faith and Annette Palmer
True-blue Arcade Fire fans, that's who. The grooves of indie-rock spun right through kickoff as some 50 or 60 people turned up at Cactus Music to buy the Grammy-winning rockers' highly anticipated new release, "Reflektor," a 12" vinyl offering that came cleverly disguised as an LP by "The Reflektors."
First in line was 21-year-old Reagan Hunter, a Texas A&M University student from the Amarillo area currently working an internship in Houston. He traced his Arcade Fire fandom back to a friend who knew he was also into Radiohead and tipped him to a couple of early singles.
"[The friend] said, 'You have to check out this band,' Hunter recalled. "Ever since, I've been waiting for their next release."
Had Hunter ever stood in line for a record before? At Record Store Day in Austin earlier this year, he said, where he picked up a release by prickly Jersey rockers Titus Andronicus and a couple of other RSD exclusives.
"It seemed like a cool experience to get the single before it was available other places," he said of "Reflektor."
Regretfully, Hunter said he had never seen Win Butler's crew live. Yet.
"I plan to the first chance I get," he swore.
Next to him, wearing a T-shirt featuring the cover of Arcade Fire's previous album The Suburbs, was Saeid Halvaeian, 27, of the Heights. A student and graphic designer who sometimes does freelance work on the video boards at Minute Maid Park and Reliant Stadium (not bad), he said he first heard the band when his dorm neighbor across the hall played "Neighborhood 3 (Power Out)," a popular tune from Arcade Fire's 2004 breakthrough LP Funeral.
Saeid Halvaeian (left) and Reagan Hunter were the first two fans in line to buy "Reflektor" Monday.
Halvaeian said he has seen the band twice so far, at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion in May 2011 and at the Austin City Limits Music Festival a few months later. At the Woodlands, the band skipped the extended version of "Ready to Start" he was hoping to hear, but thought it was worth the trip anyway.
"I hate The Woodlands," Halvaeian admitted. "I just hate driving out there, but it was them so I was happy."
Halvaeian said he had listened to "Reflektor," which had leaked to the Internet much earlier in the day, for eight solid hours Monday, and planned to buy it anyway -- even though he doesn't own a record player.
"I never lined up for vinyl [before], but I figured this was a good place to start," he said.
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