Results for James Murphy

interviews

James Murphy

In LCD Soundsystem's 2005 debut album, singer/producer James Murphy says he's "Losing His Edge." Well, 2 years after the project disbanded, we wondered if this is the case? Murphy has gone from punk and dance clubs…to Broadway? He's composed original music for the Broadway revival of the Harold Pinter play Betrayal. But if you're going to lose your edge, this isn't a bad way to do it…the play stars Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz, is produced by Scott Rudin and is directed by Mike Nichols. James talks about working with such luminaries and shares a tidbit on the forthcoming Arcade Fire release.

Go to episode 414

Top Albums of 2005

The“Best Records”list: It's“a sacred thing”in pop music fandom, says Jim, requiring a discerning ear and laser-like focus. Thankfully, our hosts are here to help. After sifting through hundreds of records, and countless days spent listening (perhaps to the discontent of their wives), they‘ve managed to pick out their absolute favorites. Here’s what Jim and Greg say they'll still be listening to in 2006.

Go to episode 2

James Murphy

As the frontman of LCD Soundsystem, James Murphy has made some of Jim and Greg's favorite records of the past decade. They thank him for that, as well as for getting everyone to dance again, despite not being your traditional lead singer. The regular ol' guy started as an indie rocker, but later fell in love with dance music, which he says has a point: to get you to move. He co-founded the DFA, or "Death From Above", record label with Tim Goldsworthy, and their roster would go on to include The Juan Maclean, The Rapture, and Hot Chip, among others. After LCD Soundsystem released some buzzworthy singles and 12 inches, the band put out three critically acclaimed albums: the self-titled debut in 2005, Sound of Silver in 2007 and This Is Happening, which became a Billboard Top 10 hit this year. Jim and Greg talk to Murphy about getting older in a business that values the young, and how he could have taken an entirely different path: as a writer for Seinfeld.

Go to episode 262
reviews
Sound of SilverSound of Silver available on iTunes

LCD Soundsystem Sound of Silver

The final review of the show is of LCD Soundsystem's second release, Sound of Silver. LCD Soundsystem is helmed by James Murphy, the DFA producer many credit with defining the New York club sound. His merging of disco and rock with the debut LCD release was hugely successful among critics and music fans. Now Murphy and co. are back with a second release that veers more towards the disco than the rock. Fans of the first release might be disappointed initially; this album doesn't suck you in as fast. But, both Jim and Greg urge listeners to give it more than one try. Some of the songs are less accessible, but music fans (and frustrated critics) will appreciate the many inside jokes and reference points. Sound of Silver gets two Buy Its.

JimGreg
Go to episode 68
This Is Happening (Deluxe Edition)This Is Happening available on iTunes

LCD Soundsystem This Is Happening

During the next segment Jim and Greg review this season's big new releases. First up, This Is Happening by LCD Soundsystem. LCD Soundsystem began as a pet project for DFA co-founder James Murphy. He's been instrumental in establishing the dance-punk sound of the past decade. Jim thinks Murphy is going for a Roxy Music vocal style. He explains that Murphy is saying this record will be his last, but notes that it's not his best. Greg agrees, adding that the bar was set very high with the previous two releases. There was much more honest emotion. But that said, it's still worth your money: a double Buy It.

JimGreg
Go to episode 230
Reflektor (Deluxe)Reflektor available on iTunes

Arcade Fire Reflektor

Arcade Fire (arguably the most important indie rock band to crossover into the mainstream since Nirvana) is back with its highly-anticipated fourth release. Coming off the heels of last year's Grammy Award-winning album, The Suburbs, this year's offering, Reflektor, takes another stab at some very big ideas. Greg appreciates the band's continued willingness to take risks, but Reflektor's sprawling sound overextends itself onto a second disc that tips the scales unfavorably away from a Buy It. Jim agrees with Greg that the band only hits the melodic and groovy sweet spot half the time (perhaps thanks to co-producer James Murphy). Additionally, the lyrics aim high as they did on previous releases, but, this time around, are just kind of a bore. Jim and Greg both say Burn It.

JimGreg
Go to episode 415
american dreamAmerican Dream available on iTunes

LCD Soundsystem American Dream

LCD Soundsystem – one of Jim and Greg's favorite bands of the 2000s – broke up in 2011 after a huge farewell show at Madison Square Garden. But only six years later, leader James Murphy has brought the group back for a fourth album, American Dream. Greg was skeptical after hearing the initial singles. But upon hearing the whole record, he calls it their most emotional work yet, designed to work as an album from beginning to end. He cites the haunted quality in Murphy's voice as he confronts getting older and loves the record's polyrhythmic vibes. While Greg gives it a Buy It, it pains Jim to give American Dream a Trash It. He's annoyed at hearing a 47-year-old complain about being old. According to Jim, the new album has lost the sense of humor, groove, and songs of the previous records, and he will never listen to American Dream again for pleasure.

JimGreg
Go to episode 614
lists

Desert Island Jukebox

All year long Jim and Greg hog the Desert Island Jukebox and play you songs they can't live without. In this episode, they flip the script and hand over the jukebox quarters to some of their musical guests. Slayer, LCD Soundsystem, Wild Flag and more took on the age-old rock question "What record would you take with you if stranded on a desert island?":

  • Troy“Trombone Shorty”Andrews - Louis Armstrong, "On the Sunny Side of the Street"
  • Alexei Perry of Handsome Furs - Doctor Alimantado, Best Dressed Chicken in Town
  • Dan Boeckner of Handsome Furs - Sonic Youth, Sister
  • Sam Beam of Iron and Wine - Harry Nilsson, Nilsson Schmilsson
  • Naomi Yang and Damon Krukowski of Damon & Naomi - Fairport Convention, Liege and Lief
  • Lily Allen - Squeeze, "Up the Junction"
  • Kerry King of Slayer - Ozzy Osbourne, Blizzard of Ozz
  • Dave Lombardo of Slayer - Amy Winehouse, Back to Black
  • Rebecca Cole of Wild Flag - Bill Withers, Just As I Am
  • Janet Weiss of Wild Flag - The Rolling Stones, Exile on Main St.
  • James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem - Roxy Music, For Your Pleasure
Go to episode 317
news

Music News

Former LCD Soundsystem frontman James Murphy has been keeping busy since the group disbanded in 2011. When not scoring Broadway plays and roasting speciality coffee, he's taking on New York City's notoriously noisy subway system. Murphy wants to change the soulless beeps made by current subway turnstiles into melodic notes that harmonize and respond to the amount of traffic passing through the station. Murphy first revealed this plan to Jim and Greg last year, but now he's making his campaign public. So far, New York City's Metropolitan Transit Authority isn't particularly warm to the idea, citing the significant cost and time, but Murphy remains undetered.

The good news for costumed rockers Kiss is that they'll be inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April. The bad news is that the band won‘t be compromising it’s creative integrity (a first, Jim says) by performing at the induction ceremony in its current iteration (which excludes original members Ace Freely and Peter Criss). With bad blood between Freely, Criss, and Gene Simmons, there's no hope for a make-up in time for the ceremony. But, Jim thinks purist Kiss fans would probably prefer to see no show than a show without the original Spaceman and Catman.

Go to episode 431

Music News

Sad news for a number of rock fans this week. Both The White Stripes and LCD Soundsystem have announced they are closing up shop. James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem suggested he'd be calling it quits (at least under that name) when he was on Sound Opinions last year. But the White Stripes announcement has come as a surprise. Greg is disappointed since Jack White's other side projects as a member of The Dead Weather and The Raconteurs and producer of albums by Wanda Jackson haven't provided him the vehicle he deserves. But, as Jim notes, the adage is true: nothing gives an artist a greater boost than dying or breaking up. Albums by The White Stripes have seen a massive sales surge.

U2's Bono and the Edge have joined forces with veteran theater and film director Julie Taymor to bring Spider-Man to the Broadway stage. The early reviews are in, and they ain't pretty. From The New York Times ("sheer ineptitude") to the Los Angeles Times ("an artistic form of megalomania") to the Chicago Tribune ("incoherent"), the critical pans are far harsher than anything U2 has received on any album. And it wasn't for lack of funds. The $65 million musical production is charging fans up to $300 just for previews. Jim and Greg wonder if Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark will fare any better than Capeman.

Go to episode 272