James Murphy Finally Explains The Real Reason LCD Soundsystem “Retired”


When LCD Soundsystem unexpectedly announced their return to music in early 2016 — some five years after their high-profile farewell — many fans felt a little cheated.

The band bowed out with a spectacular “final” show at Madison Square Garden in 2011, meaning their relatively quick return was met with more than a little cynicism.

Frontman James Murphy went a little way to addressing these concerns last year in a lengthy Facebook post, writing that he genuinely “hadn’t considered” that reaction, and he was “seriously sorry” to fans that felt that way.

But it turns out the skeptics may have been onto something — in a new interview with the The New York Times, Murphy reveals that the split was partly orchestrated in order to sell tickets for the show at MSG.

“My theory was, if I make it our last show, we’ll sell it out in two weeks,” he told the NYT. “It wasn’t a total lark, but it was a bit larky. But I like making decisions. I find it easy.”

Murphy’s idea worked: the show sold out in minutes. But he insists the move wasn’t made cynically: “It was sincere,” he said. “It wasn’t a ploy.”

Apparently his bandmates didn’t believe the split would stick either. LCD keyboardist Nancy Whang told the NYT  that she “didn’t believe it for a second” that the band was really over, and she “assumed a reunion would come much later.”

“I certainly had my hesitations,” she said of the decision to reunite. “It’s crass to say that it was about the money, but it would be insincere to say that wasn’t part of it.”

MSG ticket move aside, Murphy’s decision to end LCD in 2010 was mainly due to his reservations about the band becoming too big for its own good. “You get bigger even if the records get worse,” he said. “I didn’t want to be that band. I liked being the band that was relevant to me. I felt like we were about to be the band that was not relevant to me.”

Now that they’re here to stay, Murphy says they “really have to justify it.” His take: “That’s a new, exciting problem and far more interesting to me. We’ve got to do something good enough.”

Read the full interview with The New York Times here.