Tuesday, June 1, 2010

First Real Post

I really like these two songs from the new LCD Soundsystem record. Admittedly, I was drawn to it because the group/artist's almost universal acclaim: see Pitchfork's recent 9.2. But now I'm a bit lost. Ok, so James Murphy has a superhuman ear for sound and he's probably one of the best producers of our generation, or so I've heard. Just listen closely to the drums on any of his tracks or that monster at 3:07 of "Dance Yrself Clean", its pretty great, you'll know what I mean. But making amazing sounds and making amazing music are two different things. I've begun to realize that all the LCDS tracks that I really enjoy are pretty similar: the famous ones like "Losing My Edge" and "All My Friends" and these two. They're repetitive, emotional, building songs; they make you wait for the smallest changes and come to a good peak. But what about all of his others, like the acclaimed "Drunk Girls"? These too are repetitive, but instead of building they stagnate and get annoying. Murphy's knack for minimalism translates into what eventually sounds like a metronome: they just don't move. Murphy readily admits that he likes to copy his idols (Joy Division, Brian Eno, Bowie etc.) and I agree. But I feel like he lacks something that these guys have. When I was first introduced to the late seventies post-punk and new wave bands it took me a while to understand their appeal, but I think what I was missing was atmosphere. Joy Division could take minimalism and a knack for sound and mix up something terrifying. At his best, Murphy can mix up loss, malaise, and regret. Otherwise, I'm just not getting it.

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