Photo by Michael Alan Goldberg
From the first note hit on Wednesday the Showbox stage was abouncin’. James Murphy, the pot-bellied, white t-shirt wearing head honcho of LCD Soundystem and co-founder of dance-punk label DFA Records, strode on stage amidst fanatical cheering from the minors corralled in the center floor area.
Unfortunately, and most entertainingly, all-ages events at the Showbox require the separation of minors onto the bottom level near the stage where all the beer drinking of-agers can gawk and point endlessly. The crowd was in full force, dancing and creating mayhem to the beat of the supremely visceral and relevant dance-punk-electro-fun of LCD Soundsystem.
Their 2002 debut single, “Losing My Edge”, catapulted LCD Soundsystem into indie eardrums and garnered loads of attention with its trifling electronic beats and brash bursts of clatter. After three singles scattered throughout 2004, a self-titled full length in 2005 and his most current, Sound of Silver, Murphy is turning it up a bit and blowing the kids away.
I had high expectations of this show. Typically thoughts like that guarantee disappointment. Disappointment in the whole experience, the crowd, the sound, the band or any of the numerous factors that go into making the show-going experience a worthy one. I’m happy to say that I was not disappointed the night I saw LCD Soundsystem perform. I was thrilled.
Whittling out tunes like the melodic “Get Innocuous”, with its laser beam synths, and the revelatory and touching All My Friends and Someone Great, LCD made their way through Sound of Silver and provoked a floor vibrating dance session that brought even the most reticent fan to head-bopdom. James Murphy is a songwriter who packs so much punch it’s scary. This new, consciously streamlined and celebratory sound picks its fans from indie rock, dance and pop scenes alike. The MDMA techno kids were dancing, the indie rock swept-hair kids were dancing…. Even the 40-somethings on a night out from the kids were shaking it hard.
There is an undeniable feel-good quality about LCD Soundsystem’s music. Sound of Silver is devastatingly catchy and gutsy enough to have good lyrics and an actual heart. It’s not just dance-punk or electronica or even indie rock. It’s this permeable, hypnotic, urgent feeling of sound that makes your body want to move. Its dance music… plus so much more.
Sound of Silver is ingeniously crafted from beginning to end and translates fantastically into a bring-the-house-down live show. Everyone at the Showbox that night fell into a trance of gratifying movement and after the last song was played no one was leaving. They were staying, eyes glued to the stage, pleading for more. The experience was everything I expected it to be and more. James Murphy has certainly hit his stride and I’m watching intently to see where he’ll walk next.