LCD Soundsystem Final Show | Madison Square Garden
February 5, 2011 was just not a great day. LCD Soundsystem frontman James Murphy let slip that he was breaking up the band. For good. And we all believe him, because he's honest. Look at that face. As one of the best live and recording acts on the planet—blending styles as wide and ranging as ESG, U2, Kraftwerk and Nine Inch Nails and playing the songs as fresh as the first day you heard them—the news caught many off guard. There will never be another "Us vs. Them"? "Someone Great"? Reality was sinking in. But, wait. There would be one final show. At MSG. Jeez, gotta get that ticket! Everybody thought the same and it sold out instantly. Murphy fixed things a bit by playing some lead-ins at nearby Terminal 5. But MSG was, and will always, be the final bow.
And, as advertised, the 3.5-hour performance was one big party. (From our seat we could see the backstage section filled with friends and family members doing that hug-and-dance-at-the-same-time thing). The headlines will read that the members of Arcade Fire joined the band as back-up singers on "North American Scum"—and here it is. But the final gig was not about wheeling out Alicia Keys or renting some Def Leppard laser-light kit. It was about paying respect to the catalog and, most important, the fans. When was the last 3.5 hour show you went to? Here's the setlist. Your favorite LCD song is probably on there somewhere. Pay your respects. Murphy certainly did. —Matt Rodbard