Hmmmm. Okay. A string of these are about to happen; songs that take me back just a couple of months.
Last night I watched Shut Up & Play The Hits with some friends, and at the close Aanand was saying something to effect that LCD Soundsystem are just about the only band to have made self consciousness a successful tool in their arsenal and not a crippling weakness.
Self-awareness, self-parody and performance are a big part of what makes them so special. They’re playing to an audiences for whom the same trappings are a crutch and a barrier. They’re a very pure reflection of the potential for meta-text to become text.
We were pretty drunk.
In that context, “New York I Love You” is one of their classics. It’s basically the dialogue voiced by everyone I know who’s ever lived in that city for more than a few months. It’s saccharine, soppy, sad and soulful. And it’s funny, in a James Murphy way.
And it’s always made me a little sad – it’s that kind of song – but it’s not why it makes me sad now.
Anne and I got together in New York, and it’s where we fell apart. And a few days after our relationship came to an end I wound up going for breakfast at Marlow & Sons, the restaurant where the band meet up at the end of Shut Up & Play The Hits. I only realised that during last night’s screening – the connection hadn’t been made before – and then “New York I Love You” kicked in.
It’s got all the hallmarks of an epic last song; crashing drums and a staccato close give Murphy’s mournful wail a solid foundation to roll out over Madison Square Garden. A big finale.