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Arcade Fire celebrate first photo of the Milky Way’s Black Hole Sagittarius A* with performance of two songs

Arcade Fire are celebrating the first ever image of the Mily Way’s supermassive black hole Sagittarius A* with a two song performance.

Yesterday (May 12th), the Event Horizon Telescope team presented the first ever image of the black hole Sagittarius A*. Arcade Fire’s Win Butler and Régine Chassagne have been fascinated by these space-time shredding phenomena for years. In fact, the cover of their new album of WE features one of the most famous photos of a black hole, superimposed over a picture of an eye.

That photograph was the first image ever of a black hole, of the one at the center of the M87 galaxy, in fact. The photograph was presented by the same Event Horizon Telescope team back in 2019. The image depicts an orange circle around a dark nothing, and that orange is a superhot radiation of burning matter. That matter is hurtling toward the event horizon, where gravity gets so strong that even light can’t escape it.

Now, we’ve gotten a glimpse at the black hole at the center of our own galaxy, the Milky Way. This new photograph of Sagittarius A* looks pretty similar to that of M87.

In celebration of the photo, Arcade Fire performed the title track to “WE” and a song named after the black hole, “End of the Empire IV (Sagittarius A*).” Watch the performance below.

Win Butler on Sagittarius A*:

During a press conference, the Event Horizon Telescope Team handed the mic over to Butler and Chassagne.

“To me it’s almost symbolic,” Butler says. “There’s so much we don’t know about ourselves and our planet.”

“When I was reading about Sagittarius A* it just spoke to me as this enormous thing at the center of our galaxy that we don’t understand that we’re trying to understand better,” Butler adds. “The sense of collaboration it takes to get these images — it transcends international borders and it’s in all of humanity’s common interest. It’s important to look up at the stars to get out of our own heads.”

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