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This Is Happening

4.3 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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This Is Happening
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Audio CD, May 18, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

2010 release, the third album proper from James Murphy's LCD Soundsystem, follows 2007's warmly received 'Sounds Of Silver'. Musically inspired by late 1970's David Bowie, This Is Happening also has artwork that directly references Bowie's classic 1979 album Lodger. The record retains Murphy's idiosyncratic sense of humour and includes the single 'Drunk Girls'. EMI.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 18, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: DFA/Parlophone
  • ASIN: B003BEE0F8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,589 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
.. but great artists steal, or so they say.

And LCD are certainly mining the past on their third effort, the deliberately dense "This is Happening." James Murphy, the frontman and only solid emelent of an otherwise revolving lineup, has never been shy about proclaiming his influences and touting his musical heroes, but previous lp's always seemed more a mis-mash of otherwise incoherent styles, rather than the clear homages that mark this, the newest LCD album.

Not that I'm complaining; far from it. But let there be a warning to those who don't find late 70's Bowie or Iggy to their taste: a full three songs on the sprawling nine track lp are, beyond a reasonable doubt, directly inspired by Bowie & Co.

Drunk Girls, for example, copies "Lodger's" Boys Keep Swinging, while Somebody's Calling Me borrows nearly note for note the backing blips and piano of "The Idiot's" Nightclubbing. All I Want, too, reaches back to Bowie's "Heroes" for its Eno-itized riffing and vocal delivery.

The video for All My Friends clued us all in that Bowie's Berlin Tryptich served as a muse for Murphy and his band, but never before has it been more clear that the Bowie/Iggy partnership circa '76-'79 really ground LCD in the canon of Rock 'n' Roll rather than more modern dance music.

Which isn't to say the dance/electro that marked the beginning of LCD's career isn't still there. It's just much more subtle and nuanced when it is. Songs like One Hit and Dance Yrself Clean both feature the requisite kickdrums and basslines, but the melodies and lyrics are much more at the forefront. The days of Daft Punk is Playing at My House are over. If LCD's going to make a dance song now, they earn it with emotional impact and complex dynamic shifts.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I don't know that anyone makes better use of Cowbell than LCD Soundsystem. I don't know if its even possible. But seriously, they make good use of every instrument on every album. It's clearly a mission to take Old School Analog gear and percussion from old school dance and electronica and reinvent them in a fresh way.

Somehow they find ways to keep the music rich while appearing simple and highly accessible. This is True on all the LCD Sound System Albums, but especially on "This Is Happening". Ironically, on the track "you wanted a hit" he talks about how they don't set out to "make hits", but i truly believe LCD succeeds by staying true to its heart and making music that they as a band believe in.

This definitely an album to check out if you're looking for anything with cool grooves and a touch of rock here and there. its a nicely balanced palate of funk, dance, rock, with "indie" flavor and tongue in cheek sprinklings of humor.

My stand out tracks are (in order of appearance): DANCE YOURSELF CLEAN; DRUNK GIRLS; ONE TOUCH; I CAN CHANGE; YOU WANTED A HIT; POW POW; and HOME.

If you haven't heard the other albums, make sure to pick up Sound of Silver and the LCD Soundsystem albums.

Five stars for this one.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Going through my first listen now. Was dubious about buying this one due to the writings of the musical literates who listed all the influences that this album draws from and claimed it was a bad thing. There's nothing LCD Soundsystem has produced in the past that I didn't appreciate and enjoy. This album is no different.

Rock and roll is just cleaned up blues. Everything's been done and nothing's original. Shakespeare stole, so did Dylan, so did the Stones and the Beatles, as does Scorsese, Tarantino, and even (gasp) David Bowie.

The point is to make the thing you're doing so fun and awesome that no one will have time to complain.

This album is flat out beautiful. Very different mood than the prior releases. Murphy seems to have taken off his armor for this one, trading in irony, humor and up tempo catchphrase tunes for sincerity and haunting melodies.

Oscar Wilde said thst the only reason for a work of art to exist is to be beautiful, and that beauty was useless, in the pragmatic, workaday sense.

This is a useless, beautiful album.

It feels like New York city at night, fat with promise and heartache.

Buy it.
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Format: Audio CD
Seeing LCD Soundsystem live at this year's Sasquatch music festival, I realized I thought frontman James Murphy's current touring band is a little like Bruce Springsteen Springsteen fused the rock and r/b and singer-songwriter movement and folk of his recent past and turned them into a band that felt unmistakably thrilling, like a train at full speed taking you somewhere new. Murphy is much older and rounder than Springsteen was when he started, but that sense is there - there are guitars and drums and keyboards, but also drum panels and laptops and little gray boxes I can't identify. You can't quite call Murphy a DJ, even though that's where he started - instead, Murphy has created a band (even though he plays every instrument on the records) that seems to define the capabilities of modern music.

Or, to put it differently: This is happening. That title. How ironic and exciting for an album whose influences seem to fly out of everywhere at once. "I Can Change," the thrilling synth keyboard at its center could have been lifted from the 80s Human League classic "Keep Feeling Fascination;" "All I Want" could be a 90s classic guitar song, even with the bleeps; "Someone's Calling Me" is like a muted, sexy take on Iggy Pop's "Nightclubbing."

But that's not what I think Murphy implies is "happening" with that title (nor are his hipster dance moves, gray hair, and skinny tie of the cover). Instead, that's what's in the lyrics - songs of facing your life and your shortcomings, buried in a great dance groove.
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