Thursday 14 September 2017

On Stage: LCD Soundsystem @ Paradiso

Some rumours are saying LCD Soundsystem only quit a few years back to sell more concert tickets for their shows at Madison Square Garden. The shows did sell out in record time and now the band seems to be more popular than ever. Whatever the reason was, after releasing a great new album American Dream, the band are playing two dates at Paradiso that sold out in a matter of minutes a few months ago. I was one of the lucky few to grab one.

LCD Soundsystem at Paradiso Amsterdam, September 12 2017

Although Paradiso is one of the bigger clubs, it is still a lot smaller than the middle sized venues or the festival crowds they are normally playing. So tonight is a wonderful opportunity to see this band from up close. The day before people were euphoric about the show over here so I was prepared for something good.

We get to hear a nice cross over from all of their records including the new one American Dream. Every album is represented with a few songs without focusing on the newest. Their unique sound, punk rock blended with electronic dance music, or electronic dance music with a punk attitude, never changed but gradually evolved and was perfected throughout the years. The band, surrounded by analog synthesizers, amps, instruments and other equipment, never go out of their way to fire up the crowd. Front man and anti-hero James Murphy walks around stage like he's in an office and when he's not singing he's going through his lyrics like he's reading a manual for one of the complicated looking synths. But the band have such an amazing repertoire with incredible songs and the setlist is so well balanced that they don't have to fly around the stage to keep the attention.

The crowd is dancing from the first second on and transforms into a hot swirling mass of people during crowd pleasers like 'Daft Punk Is Playing At My House' and 'Tribulations'. The band is watching seemingly unaffected, but when you look closely you can sometimes see them making eye contact with each other with approving faces. Murphy is poking fun at his band mates with a grin and it is clear they are having fun here. This is one of those nights where a band gets the best out of Paradiso and the venue lives up to its legendary status to get the best out of a band and the fans. The whole room is electrifying and buzzing with excitement.

Murphy explains halfway the show the remaining plan of the evening and that they will leave the stage for a short break at one point. Not for an encore but for an "intermission" as he calls it. He promises they will play one of their songs live for the first time ever after that. It turns out to be 'I Used To' off their latest record which sounds just as convincing as the rest of the set. The night ends with an explosive version of 'All My Friends' where there's not a single person left who is not dancing. After two hours everyone leaves completely satisfied with memories of a unique experience.

All Pictures

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01. Us v Them
02. Daft Punk Is Playing at My House
03. I Can Change
04. Get Innocuous!
05. Call The Police
06. You Wanted a Hit
07. Tribulations
08. Movement
09. Someone Great
10. American Dream
11. Tonite
12. Home
13. New York, I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down
14. I Used To
15. Dance Yrself Clean
16. All My Friends

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