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To kick off the 39th season of Saturday Night Live this past Saturday, indie powerhouse Arcade Fire performed as the featured musical guest. The band showcased two songs from their forthcoming album during the show: “Reflektor” – their latest single released back on September 9 – as well as a previously unreleased track entitled “Afterlife,” which continued in the same vein as the previous song with its heavy, ominous bass contrasting the up-tempo beat.
The show then segued into a prerecorded thirty minute concert special which was “Live from the Salsatheque.” Cameos were made by a slew of celebrities featuring Zach Galifianakis and Bill Hader as astronauts and Michael Cera as an overly critical, spanish-speaking bartender. Other celebrities with brief appearances include James Franco, Ben Stiller, Bono, Rainn Wilson, Eric Wareheim, and Aziz Ansari.
The band unveiled three new songs from Reflektor, the titles of which are presumably “Here Comes The Night Time,” “We Exist,” and “Normal People.” While the band played, the camera cut to show a disco floor of people dancing in elaborate costumes such as a skeleton and a rabbit. The overall sensibility of the special seemed to take inspirations from everywhere – equal parts Mardi Gras, Dia de los Muertos, and other esoteric celebrations the world over. To say that it was bizarre experiencing watching it would be an understatement. You just have to see it to believe it:
Reflektor is slated for release on October 29 via Merge.