Arcade Fire Performs Politically Charged New Single, 'Generation A,' On Colbert The band gave fans a rousing preview of "Generation A" as part of Stephen Colbert's election-night special.
NPR logo Arcade Fire Returns With 2020's First Big Post-Election Protest Anthem

Arcade Fire Returns With 2020's First Big Post-Election Protest Anthem

"I don't think they understand that I am not a patient man," Win Butler of Arcade Fire sings in "Generation A." Theo Wargo/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Theo Wargo/Getty Images

"I don't think they understand that I am not a patient man," Win Butler of Arcade Fire sings in "Generation A."

Theo Wargo/Getty Images

This year's interminable election season has helped spawn an outsize assortment of frequently vital protest music. Late Tuesday, as part of Stephen Colbert's election-night special for Showtime, Arcade Fire premiered the first big post-election protest song of 2020.

Titled "Generation A," and praised by Colbert as "a hopeful message to the youths," the song leans hard into rousing grandiosity. And, while summing up the frustrations and furies of an entire generation is no easy feat, singer Win Butler finds a smart angle: the deep undercurrent of impatience that comes with waiting for your turn to lead.

YouTube

"I don't think they understand that I am not a patient man," he sings en route to a chant-along chorus of "I can't wait" and, less hopefully, "Too little, too late."

Assuming it gets a studio version, "Generation A" will be Arcade Fire's first release since... okay, a song on last year's Dumbo soundtrack. But let's consider it a sequel — and a worthy companion — to 2017's Everything Now.