Arcade Fire, ‘Abraham’s Daughter’ – Song Review
Arcade Fire‘s ‘Abraham’s Daughter’ appears on the soundtrack for ‘The Hunger Games’ and plays during the end credits of the film about teenagers who battle for survival on live TV. The song has
building, rising tension that mimics that of the televised bloodsport central to the plot. Essentially, it sounds like what heroine Katniss Everdeen would listen to before hunkering down and preparing for battle in her post-apocalyptic, dystopian world.
There’s a militaristic beat woven throughout and an overall military cadence set against the ominous instrumentation, but it’s tempered by the ethereal, female vocals of Régine Chassagne. She’s almost like a mirage, making you feel like things will be okay, but then the nervous instrumentation won’t allow itself to be kept at bay.
To say that ‘Abraham’s Daughter’ is haunting would be like saying that teenagers fighting for the lives in front of spectators is light family fare. The song creeps up on you and breathes down your neck and the uneasiness thickens throughout the course of three minutes. It’s almost suffocating but just when you think you’re about to break, Win Butler and crew pull back ever so slightly and musical asphyxiation is staved off.
You want to talk about painfully pretty? Arcade Fire’s ‘Abraham’s Daughter’ is a master class in that feeling. It’s a subtle battle anthem that proves you don’t need to stomp your feet and scream to get the adrenaline coursing through your veins. Sometimes a steady stream of rising and falling tension will achieve the same effect.
Listen to Arcade Fire ‘Abraham’s Daughter’