By now the “farewell concert” has become something of a cliché.
Ever since Jay-Z hosted his retirement extravaganza back in 2003 (which didn’t last very long), the legitimacy of other acts celebrating their exit from show business has been somewhat questionable. Let’s be honest though, are we ever upset when one of favorite artists decides to come out of the wood work and start performing again? Absolutely not.
LCD Soundsystem, what hasn’t been said about them already? For a band with a relatively short life span of only 10 years, they released three critically acclaimed albums, and for many of us, defined an indelible era of musical history.
Although it’s easy to forget sometimes, given how popular music has shifted toward an EDM-dominated landscape, that there was a time when electronic music wasn’t very ‘cool’ at all.
It was flaunted by cool kids, hipsters. LCD Soundsystem frontman James Murphy first made a name for himself by co-founding DFA Records, a record label that quickly picked up steam as an underground advocate for house music’s accession into the mainstream.
By the time LCD Soundsystem formed in 2001 their hometown of Brooklyn had already been transformed into the central hub of hipsterdom (yeah I know, I made up a word, but so what?!). Indie electronic music was about to explode into a global phenomenon. Albums like Cut Copy’s In Ghost Colours, Jus†ice’s †, and lest we forget, LCD Soundsystem’s Sound of Silver, received not only rave reviews from the music press, but were starting to cut mainstream pop out of the picture all together. This empowering shift marked the beginning of the digital age, for the first time since recorded music’s inception, listeners were choosing their own music, and plugging their iPod’s (that’s right) into their car stereos rather than listening to overly-glossed Top 40 hits and mainly commercials.
By the end of the decade LCD Soundsystem was on top of the world. Sold out concerts, packed festivals, and Murphy plastered onto the front page of every music publication possible.
Then, like all good things, LCD Soundsystem decided it was time to call it quits. On February 5th, 2011, the band announced on their website that they thought it was better to quit while they were ahead and go out with a bang.
On April 2nd, 2011, at Madison Square Garden, the band performed their final show.
Hold on, hold on. Where have a heard this before? This is bogus! You know this isn’t going to last! Come on!
Sure enough…on January 5th this note was posted to their website. That’s right, they’re back. Like really back.
Of course, it’s no surprise that somehow Coachella managed to cash in on their triumphant return. While we can safely assume plenty of festival-goers will flock to the outskirts of Palo Alto to sweat it out this April, where will LCD Soundsystem appear next? For now, my friends, the answer to that question is shrouded in mystery. The only hint is a promising yet cryptic message on their website: “2016 tour dates coming soon.” I supposed we’ll have to wait it out (although, I think it’s safe to assume they’ll be playing somewhere in the vicinity of New York.)
By far the most important tidbit of information is that there’s a new album in the works.
LCD Soundsystem has a pretty awesome discography. It’s dancey, but sophisticated. It’s music that celebrates dusting off obscure records for audiophiles with an interest in obscure music. You know, like cool kids. Hipsters.
So in short, farewell concerts are probably a sham, so don’t drive halfway across the country to celebrate your favorite band’s early–er, I mean, botched retirement. LCD Soundsystem is back and 2016 is going to be an awesome year to ”Dance Yrself Clean” yet again!