On LCD Soundsystem and Starting Back Up


Sometimes I wonder about the state of affairs on the Internet of Things, like this recent faux-tumult where everyone has been worked into a lather about the return of LCD Soundsystem even though Murphy & Co. previously declared things over – as if anyone knew with absolute certainty that they were done making music under that moniker when they “retired” about five years ago.

Here’s the thing: Murphy is an artist. Part of my understanding of artistry is that there is an inherent need to create. The artist – whoever he or she is – can’t simply switch it off, even if they really want to. He or she has to do it. Wine bars and coffee and shows in the subway aren’t going to be fulfilling as getting the fucking band back together and making music again. It’s just not. (And the allure of that sweet, sweet Coachella cash probably didn’t hurt much either.)

Do I think all the farewell tour stuff was a cash grab? Maybe, but I’m hedging my bets toward no. I can’t imagine that Murphy was being insincere when he said he was finished. I’m just not that cynical.

Do I think it cheapens the MSG Farewell Show Sendoff Extravaganza for people who attended (many of whom were gouged by ticket resellers)? No, I don’t think that’s the case either. It was probably a cool, communal experience for anyone who was there, and while they might be a little hurt that they weren’t one of the last 50,000 people to see LCD Soundsystem perform, they haven’t lost out on that experience. Maybe they’ll be a little gun shy about final shows in the future, but they really aren’t worse for wear.

If you think about concerts, there’s always been an element of “I was there!” to any of them. No one is angry that the show happens again the next night in a different city. Any concert is always a singular happening – particularly when the artist is good at what they do.

What the hell is my point here?

I don’t know, but this seems to dovetail nicely into the idea that I’d like to write again, or write more, or write differently than what I do in my normal nine-to-five routine. I’d like to delve back into a greater music scene that has packed up and moved on without me (not that they really noticed I was along for the ride in the first place). I’ve kept abreast of some of the larger things going on, but I was enjoying blogging more when I was into the minutia of the scene, heralding artists because they were good, and not because their PR team was begging me to or because it’d be cool if a lot of people liked it on Hype Machine. (We’re not even on Hype Machine anymore. I think our feed is there for posterity, but it’s not updating.)

That’s how it starts. We start to figure it out.