Laying LCD Soundsystem to Rest

[20 April 2011]

By Jane Jansen Seymour

Here’s my response to Corey Beasley’s “LCD Soundsystem: Who Cares About an Edge, Anyway?” Not exactly sure what our “completely amicable” feud is about – over the hype or simply the hipsters – but it did get me thinking about what exactly defines a band. LCD Soundsystem was (sadly putting it in the past tense) another love at first listen experience with a band. I hate to even admit it, but I stumbled upon the song, “Daft Punk Is Playing at My House,” on a compilation from the show The O.C. It seemed to come out of nowhere, this crazy sound of an instant wild dance party. Digging in to their self-titled release, I was rewarded by the full-blown production of “Tribulations” and the wry lyrics of “Losing My Edge”. In the eagerly awaited next release, Sound of Silver, I was sucked in by the opening groove of “Get Innocuous” with its echoing vocals and rap “don’t it make you feel alive”. Indeed it did. The pulsing synths of “Someone Great” and sing along chorus of “Us V Them” had me keep this CD handy in the house and car for multiple play-throughs. Last year’s This Is Happening, became another instant favorite. The explosion of “Dance Yrself Clean” shoots straight to the core of my soul and “All I Want” has to be one of the most romantic songs ever.

To check out as a band at this point and how it was executed may seem carefully over calculated, but I was still thrilled to share in the first show at Terminal 5. Yes, the place was full of hipsters, and I’m not part of this demographic, but is it really fans that define a band? Is it their home base of Brooklyn? It may be a hot bed for alt/indie bands this decade, but for anyone checking out one of these groups on iTunes or Myspace has to dig for this information. By virtue of the internet, music has lost any defining characteristics of geographic locale or time frame for that matter. Even reading the simplistic listing of genres doesn’t seem to create a concise definition. Music critics and journalists constantly attempt to expand these labels in their articles and essays. One of my favorite interview questions is to see how a musician describes their sound first hand. Yet even their own words always seem to fall short. It’s the visceral experience of the music that connects to fans. James Murphy will certainly continue to write and produce music, but not in the same format with this group of talented people. Losing LCD Soundsystem, and it is a personal loss, means no future collections of songs to crave from this band warranting replays to hear every lyric and of course to dance along with as well.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/post/139663-lcd-soundsystem/