The Rapture Returns with New Record

If your name is The Rapture, there is no better time to make a small comeback than now. When was the last time we heard from these guys anyway? Ironcially all of the talk about the actual rapture, had me searching for my Rapture albums on the shelf. Well played God. The band is heading back to their old label, the James Murphy owned DFA Records for their revival. This will be the group’s first record in 5 years. It was recorded in Brooklyn and Paris. The Rapture will release The Grace of Your Love on September 6th. Take a peek at the tracklisting below.

01 Sail Away
02 Miss You
03 Blue Bird
04 Come Back to Me
05 In the Grace of Your Love
06 Never Gonna Die Again
07 Roller Coaster
08 Children
09 Can You Find a Way?
10 How Deep Is Your Love?
11 It Takes Time to Be a Man


LCD Soundsystem Get Everyone To Dance On Their Grave At Madison Square Garden

I remember the first time I spotted LCD Soundsystem’s lead singer and creator James Murphy on the L train. It was a Sunday afternoon and we were the only two people in the car, besides a street performer playing a saxophone for change. I sat there only a few feet away from both of them, studying James as he leaned against the door with his headphones on. The performance was one I will never forget. He played that thing with blood sweat and tears, jumping around flailing his legs, while at the same time hitting some of the worst possible notes he could or could not think of. James just stood there nonplussed, as if the man wasn’t even there before exiting the train on 1st Avenue. Though we never made eye contact, I am pretty sure we both shared a moment of random perplexity that made us think to ourselves “Only in New York City” which is perhaps one of the many reasons we love this place so much.

Nearly 5 years later, I found myself standing in a line outside of Mercury Lounge amongst 500+ people for hours anxious to get general admission tickets to what would be the last LCD Soundsystem show ever. The company of friends was the only thing keeping me from thinking about standing there in 14 degree weather risking hypothermia, and the fact that I woke up at 7am to go stand on a line in the first place. A month later, as we walked into Madison Square Garden, my friends and I sighed the words of relief “totally worth it”… When we made it to the floor, we just stood there for a minute and spun our heads around in amazement. We watched hundreds upon hundreds of people dance there asses off, all in unison bearing ear to ear grins. Everyone was clad in black and white, as this was a “funeral” for the band of sorts, but no way did it feel like one. We all knew we were part of something huge. I don’t mean to gush, but you just had to be there.

The show started on a somber note, playing the first bars of 10cc’s “Not In Love”, a track I always include on CD mixes for friends, though I am sure it went unnoticed to most of the audience. The first set included “Dance Yrself Clean”, “Daft Punk Is Playing At My House”, “All My Friends”, and “Tired” with a snippet of 70’s progressive rock band Yes’ “Heart of the Sunrise”, a song I have known since my toddler years. It was a joyful ending as my friends and I danced arm in arm, and great predecessor to the following 2 and a half hours the show still had.

The second set started with a track they made for a Nike ad called “45:33”, which most perceived was performed as a joke, but mostly so Murphy could take a break. The tune previews clips of songs that later became the track list to their sophomore studio release “Sound Of Silver”. Some of the special guest who joined them onstage include Reggie Watts, and DFA affiliates The Juan Maclean and Shit Robot who performed in a rocket ship and a pyramid, putting to rest the rumors that Daft Punk would be making an appearance. Coming into the third set saw Arcade Fire approach the stage to back vocals for “North American Scum”, a ground-shaking performance of “Movement”, the very first song I ever heard by them, and “Home” which I am sure left a cry ball in everyones throat.

But the real tear jerker, of course, was “New York I Love You, But You’re Bringing Me Down”, and it was so for so many reasons. As James announced that he was about to sing his last song ever, the audience booed, prompting him to ask not for boos but for cheers, and cheers he got, for about 5 minutes in fact. He thanked his family, fans, friends, and band mates with tears in his eyes, and started the song, adding profoundly long pauses in between lines. During the songs ending, white balloons fell from the ceiling, and James bowed, sealing the deal on one of the best live performances I have ever seen in my entire life, and the end of LCD Soundsystem.

I still haven’t made eye contact with James, and I probably never will for that matter, but I feel like we relived that moment from 5 years ago. There was no train, no crazy saxophone player, just a lot of love, a lot of energy and an amazing perfromance. Thank you LCD Soundsystem for the music, for the memories, and for sharing a fondness for New York City that will never die…

Shit Robot Gives Away New Track

Shit Robot recently wowed a packed house at Terminal 5, opening for and jamming with LCD Soundsystem for the group’s last handful of shows. Now the group is looking to expand, releasing a new EP and planning an upcoming tour.

Robot’s first EP, Losing My Patience, will be out on April 18th both digitally and on vinyl. It features remixes from Hot Chip and Unabombers.

If you can’t wait a week (seriously?), Shit Robot will accommodate. The group has released the single “Losing My Patience” for free thanks to DFA Records. Grab your copy right here!

Album Review: The Naked and Famous – “Passive You Aggressive Me”

The pathway to success has been a relatively uncharted one for New Zealand based five-piece The Naked and Famous. After recording two EPs in the home studio of vocalists Thom Powers and Alisa Xayalith, the band returned to that same studio, with few expectations, to record their debut LP.

Lead single “All of This” failed to impact but then, a funny thing happened; the album’s second single, “Young Blood” shot to the top of the New Zealand pop charts. Suddenly, an indie band from Auckland was getting more spins than Katy Perry and B.o.B, and soon thereafter pivotal blogs in the U.S. and U.K. were lauding the group. So, by the time Passive You Aggressive Me was released in overseas, The Naked and Famous had been named the “Best up-and-coming band” by NME Magazine.

Consumed in a vacuum, “All of This” and “Young Blood” would suggest a debut album much different than the one they’re actually featured on. Powers, who co-produced the album with band-mate Aaron Short, has a clear affinity for the 1980’s Shoegaze Movement and the more recent Nu Gaze Movement. As such, he and Short provide a glossy sheen of synthesizers and distorted vocals that make for a wonder-wall of sound on both of the Passive You Aggressive Mes singles. However, the album, as a whole, is far more eclectic in its offerings.

“No Way” starts simple enough with Xavalith’s fragile vocal over an acoustic guitar, but subsequently grows into a boisterous number filled with tambourines, echo effects and heavy percussion.  While “Spank” is an outright dance track in the mold of LCD Soundsystem’s more commercial work, and softer cuts like “Frayed” and “Girls Like You” show true versatility. The Naked and Famous may not reinvent the wheel on their debut album, but they most certainly make it turn.

Overall: B+

Shit Robot Debuts Hot Chip Remix

Hot Chip’s Alex Taylor has remixed Shit Robot’s track “Losing My Patience” (which he conveniently lent vocals to on the original). The remix is part of the new Shit Robot single, which features the original version of “Losing My Patience.”

Along with Hot Chip’s remix, the single features a Unabombers’ remix and a dub version. The single will be out April 18th on DFA records. You can hear the Hot Chip remix below.

Shit Robot debuted a visual-heavy live performance at this year’s SXSW, dubbed the “Shit Robot Show”. He continued the moment throughout March, stopping by Terminal 5 to help send of LCD Soundsystem last week.

Midnight Magic Join LCD Soundsystem For Farewell Shows

If you thought disco died a couple decades ago, then Midnight Magic might have some choice words for you.

The 9-piece (!!!) disco band will be the guest band for LCD Soundsystem’s last shows ever and will be playing an additional New York show with Cut Copy.

The group have also released a new video for their disco-centric “Beam Me Up”. Check it out.

Midnight Magic will be playing New York (with Cloud Cult and LCD Soundsystem) on these dates:

4/6: New York, NY @ Terminal 5 w/Cut Copy

4/9: Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie w/Jessica 6

March 29-31: New York, NY @ Terminal 5 w/ LCD Soundsystem

4/2: New York, NY @ Madison Square Garden w/ LCD Soundsystem