With American Dream, dance-punk powerhouse LCD Soundsystem show they haven’t missed a beat | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

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With American Dream, dance-punk powerhouse LCD Soundsystem show they haven’t missed a beat


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It feels like it was yesterday when dance-punk top dog James Murphy bid adieu to LCD Soundsystem, his often cheeky—but also often pensive—mutating hit machine of the 2000s. Maybe that’s because 2011, the year the band split, doesn’t seem too far gone, and 2015 (when they officially reunited) feels like last week—or maybe we pray that it does? The new LCD album, American Dream (Columbia), affirms that even though it’s the band’s second round, Murphy still hasn’t shaken his desire to reflect on his own coolness while standing behind a microphone. That’s just fine, because he can still write stuttering hooks that are simultaneously beholden to the subtlety of NYC’s great art-punks Liquid Liquid or the Talking Heads and big enough that a glitzed-out disco ball could be dropped smack-dab in the middle (see: “Other Voices”). Even a headier track like “How Do You Sleep?”—which is steadied by a dark electro pulse as Murphy wails in the background—percolates and bristles thanks to LCD’s steadfast allegiance to their eclectic percussive elements. Which is all to say, the rhythms are still fun and interesting, and as a cut like “Emotional Haircut” shows from its title on down, Murphy and LCD have retained the acumen to write tongue-in-cheek yarns that boogie along with an air of self-aware pretension. That’s really what the band does best, and, well, it’s nice that they’re still doing it.   v

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