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LCD SOUNDSYSTEM - "American Dream"   Print  E-mail 
Written by Mark Reed  
Monday, 25 September 2017

'I never realised how much artists thought about dying'

And what once was gone, is back again. And older, and wiser. And unlike anyone else, LCD are the band that have at least words to back up the music. There's bands that sound similar to LCD, and in some ways, bands that are better, but why don't I Love them, the way I love LCD?


LCD are a band that did what every band did. They came, they saw, they disappeared. And now, for a second, they are back and showing us. Like an old friend you haven't seen for a while, or one who's moved to the other side of the world you will never kiss again, suddenly reappearing.

If anything LCD Soundsystem are the silver fox of bands. Growing more beautiful with age. The songs are the same, yet different. The same people, but wiser. After a long goodbye, which saw them – and us – saying goodbye to something, quitting at exactly the right time, before they got too boring, too predictable, too normal, or before time dulled the blade of their work, LCD came back. Opening the door. And showing us that now, the hair is grey, the suits are a bit tatty, but the heart is as strong as ever. The grooves are still there. Aging, with integrity, is beautiful. Aging, but still being who you are, not fighting it but embracing it, is beautiful.

For some bands, a seven year gap is the blink of an eye. For others, their entire lifetime. But here, American Dream cuts slyly both way. America is dreaming. America has just woken from the long nightmare of peace and prosperity. America dreams of what it could be. Everyone's dream is different – some a place of happiness and sunshine. Others of a clean white land where there are no dreamers, and no dreams.

The elephant in the room is David Bowie. He's in every second of this. Every groove. Murphy remixed some of Bowie's last material, and contributed to the final Blackstar. Some of the lyrics are direct lifts from conversations and emails he had with Bowie : American Dream is as much about seeing the world change around you and wondering what your position is in that world (if you have one, anymore), and seeing everything changing, and aging in a young world, as much as anything. As a man racing through middle age, one day at a time, this is my battle.

“I never realised how much artists thought about dying”, Murphy sings. And he's right. All art is some way of trying to achieve immortality, conscious or not. American Dream is an imagining of identity and where we all are in the modern world, to a fluid and lovely sound.

American Dream comes from a land where everyone is dying is the future LCD now live in : where everything changes and decays. In some respects, this is the legacy – or the hangover – of the decade before. Nobody dies, they just grow older and disappear. And now people are dying, the band are back, before its too late. This isn't the movies, where Superman comes back from the dead before the end credits. LCD were dead and gone, and now they are not. They are back, and alive, and the music is as good as anything they have done before. It's a “comeback” done perfectly – with new songs as good as old songs.


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