December 19, 2017
LCD Soundsystem played Brooklyn Steel
As they close in on their third and final residency of the year at Brooklyn Steel, LCD Soundsystem continue to prove that they're still a driving force to be reckoned with and their love for their hometown remains unwavering.
By the time 2017 draws to a close, LCD Soundsystem will have played twenty-two sold-out shows at Brooklyn Steel and after facing some rather serious backlash from their most loyal followers, it all seems to be well worth it. Coming back to Brooklyn after two strings of shows back in April and June, December's run found the band playing to a hometown crowd for the first time since the release of American Dream, their highly anticipated and one of the year's best records, as well as Lizzy Goodman's phenomenal book Meet Me in the Bathroom, which chronicles New York City's early aught rock and roll renaissance of which Mr. Murphy and company paid a large part. Seeing the band now after hearing their history feels like a brand new take on something that has already been so loved, but makes the experience feel as if it's happening for the very first time. Like a wonderful culmination in a year that helped redefine the band and shed some extra light on their rise to prominence. The band eased into the show by kicking things off with some rather slower numbers like "Yr City's a Sucker," "I Can Change," and "You Wanted a Hit" before fully unleashing the true powers of the band. Breaking out "I Used To" got the crowd excited by the inclusion of a new track and really led to the band hitting their stride as a one-two combo of "Tribulations" and "Movement" saw the band at their heaviest moments of the night as they really pressed into their dance-punk roots and got the packed club rocking. From that moment forward, the band was operating at maximum velocity and began to remind everyone in the room just why they fell in love with James and his music in the first place. The emotionally enthralling hum and pulsation of "Someone Great" warmed up the venue as a dark orange hue illuminated the band for one of the more emotional moments of the night before a series of seamless transitions saw the band navigate from "Tonite" to "Home" with utter perfection. Back in the spring and early summer, it seemed rather questionable as to whether some of the new tracks the band had been debuting would fit well into the band's canon, but tonight proved that the group had no problems working the newer material into the set and "Tonite" really saw the crowd embrace the moment and lift the night to a new level. It was a collective freak-out that further cemented the band's reunion victory lap. Of course, ending their main set with "New York I Love You" saw the room fill with rapturous singing and harkened back to a decade prior when things seemed just a tad bit easier and politics weren't such a difficult pill to swallow. The encore began with "Oh Baby," another impressive highlight from the new record and, again, one of the more downtempo parts of the night that somehow still managed to feel massive and all encompassing. "Change Yr Mind" followed suit and was another strong reminder of the band's love for the sounds of Eno and Byrne that helped shape the city nearly forty years ago and laid the ground work for James to build his DFA empire. Then, in typical fashion, the band capped off the night with their explosive "Dance Yrself Clean" and "All My Friends" combination that still feels as exhilarating now as it did the first time I experienced it back in April. When the beat drops and crowd simultaneously jumps, there are few words to describe the pure elation that overcomes not just one person, but the entire audience and to have that followed by a song that has defined a generation and just celebrated a decade of influence, it's hard to imagine a better way to end not just a show, but a year as well.