Live Tracks from LCD’s Madison Square Garden Show

Posted in Music on April 3rd, 2011 by Tom

I spent most of tonight watching the LCD Soundsystem farewell show at Madison Square Garden, and it did not disappoint.

Word ’round the campfire is that Spike Jonze was on the scene to direct the filming of the entire spectacle, so keep your eyes open for the impending DVD release. It’s one that’ll be well worth the money.

Below are the handful of tracks I ripped from the capture I took of the show. They’re all really good, but my feed decided to buffer in the middle of ‘North American Scum’, which was one of the best parts because of a highly entertaining guest appearance by members of Arcade Fire! So that’s not here (if anyone has it, I’d be really appreciative!).

‘All My Friends’
[ mp3 ♫ ]

‘You Wanted a Hit’
[ mp3 ♫ ]

‘Someone Great’
[ mp3 ♫ ]

[ mp3 ♫ ]
(Sorry, this one has a dull patch in the middle I did my best to fix; plugged in my headphones which screwed with the capture feed…)

I hope you enjoy them, even if you missed the show. It was truly an emotional evening, and one I don’t think any participating LCD fan will ever forget it.

EDIT: CoS had the YouTube video of the one piece I really wanted but missed:

‘North American Scum (ft. Arcade Fire)’
[ mp3 ♫ ]


LCD Signs Off

Posted in Music on April 2nd, 2011 by Tom

2010’s masterful This Is Happening opens with ‘Dance Yrself Clean’, featured previously on this blog. It includes the lyrics,

Every night’s a different story
It’s a thirty car pile-up with you
Everybody’s getting younger
It’s the end of an era, it’s true

The last of which seems especially appropriate, given that tonight LCD Soundsystem will play their final no-holds-barred Madison Square Garden show (you can watch it live over at Pitchfork). As a late-comer to the LCD party, I don’t feel entirely like my grief over the loss of the band is justified, but what the hell.

‘All My Friends’
[ mp3 ♫ ]

They were a fantastic band that was a class act both in and beyond their music. They will be missed, but while most bands fade away into obscurity, chasing past glories, Murphy and his crew are going out on top, in maybe the biggest and best possible way they know: throwing one last show-to-end-all-shows for their fans.

A few goodies are included below; first is the video that made me a believer in the band:

The other is a really well-done video for the closing track on their most recent (and last) album:

LCD Soundsystem Discography @


2010 Best Of

Posted in Music on December 11th, 2010 by Tom

Read the Full List Here

I’ve been hard at work on my top albums of 2010, and it’s finally done! Head over to the article for the complete list, commentary, songs, etc.

In the next few weeks, I’ve got exams and the like, so I probably won’t have more to share until I get home later in December. Until then, I hope you enjoy the list.


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This Is Happening

Posted in Music on June 12th, 2010 by Tom

If LCD Soundsystem has taught me one thing, it is the value of patience. Their previous record, Sound of Silver, is counted among the highest echelons of indie canon, but I never cared for it that much. I think that’s partially because I didn’t really “get it.” The band’s MO is writing songs that are double, if not triple, the length of your typical track; these slowly build by layering samples and beats up, breaking them down, rearranging them, sometimes multiple times. It’s music that requires both time and attention, and when I heard that This Is Happening was coming out, I resolved to give it enough of both.

The payoff is totally worth it. The opening track, ‘Dance Yrself Clean‘, is quiet for the first three minutes, with a diminished pitter-patter percussion line, and James Murphy’s hilarious lyrics:

Ah aaaaah present company
Excluded every time
Ah aaaaaah present company
The best that you can find

Talking like a jerk
Except you are an actual jerk
And living proof that sometimes friends are mean

…and then it explodes with thick bass and punching rhythms, and no shortage of synth. The change is so violent it can catch you off guard at first, but when you know its coming, the release is a masterful example of how effective this group can be when they bide their time.

‘Dance Yrself Clean’
[ mp3 ♫ ]

Another favorite of mine is ‘I Can Change‘, which focus more on lyrical wordplay than radical variations in volume levels, but every bit as fun of a song:

This is the time the very best time
So give me a line and take me home
Take me over

But dashing the hopes, dashing the hopes
And smashing the pride
The morning’s got you on the ropes
And love is a murderer , love is a murderer
But if she calls you tonight
Everything is all right
Yeah, we know

And love is a curse shoved in a hearse
Love is an open book to a verse of your bad poetry
And this is coming from me

‘I Can Change’
[ mp3 ♫ ]

While it is not as technically entrancing as the lyrics of Isaac Brock (Modest Mouse), Murphy certainly gives him a run for his money, and it is effort well spent (as can be seen also particularly well on ‘Pow Pow’). All of the songs come off as playful, direct, and honest, each of which the band conveys through the unlikely medium of indie-electronica. The meta anti-song ‘You Wanted A Hit’ is laughable almost a priori because the song is nine minutes long; the scary part being that it’s so catchy they may have made one on accident.

In a rare moment, ‘Somebody’s Calling Me’ lacks the texture and variation of the other tracks to a fault. It’s slow, drudging beat makes it feel that the song is much longer than it is, because the whole thing is so boring. Fortunately, the closer ‘Home’ brings things back where they ought to be, leaving you at the inescapable conclusion that LCD Soundsystem is undoubtedly at the top of their game, pushing the envelope of how much fun you can fit into a single record.

LCD Soundsystem – This Is Happening