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Shut Up and Play the Hits
The Very Loud Ending Of LCD Soundsystem
On April 2nd 2011, LCD SOUNDSYSTEM played its final show at Madison Square Garden in New York City. LCD Frontman James Murphy, disbanding one of the most celebrated and influential groups of its generation at the peak of its popularity, ensured that the band would go out on top with the biggest concert of its career. The instantly sold out, near four-hour extravaganza featured special appearances by Arcade Fire and Reggie Watts and moved the crowd of thousands to tears of joy and grief. SHUT UP AND PLAY THE HITS both captures this once-in-a-lifetime event with stunning visuals and serves as an intimate portrait of Murphy as he navigates the 48 hours surrounding the show. Woven throughout is an honest and unflinching conversation between Murphy and author Chuck Klosterman as they discuss music, art, aging, and the decision to call it quits while at the top of your game.
I knew I was disappointed that I would never see LCD Soundsystem live, but now I'm fucking devastated.
Shut Up and Play the Hits is a film that documents the final concert by LCD Soundsystem at Madison Square Gardens. Directors, Will Lovelace and Dylan Southern, follow the shows buildup as well as interview band founder, James Murphy. In truth I don’t think I’ve ever heard a more appropriate title for a film as it was exactly what I was shouting at the screen every time the documentary drifted into introspection rather than focusing on the exhilarating gig.
I consider myself a fan of LCD Soundsystem and this film is most successful when simply focusing on the music. The concert footage throughout is excellent, capturing the energy both on stage and in the crowd as the group play an…
Por fin me decido a ver este documental que tanto os gustó y que también a mí me ha gustado mucho. He disfrutado y me he emocionado, pero me he distraído un poco, porque no he podido evitar pasar todo el rato pensando que Shut Up and Play the Hits es el reverso perfecto de otro rockumentary muy chulo: el de Metallica.
James Murphy the musician
The look and editing
James Murphy the person
All the hugging
This nicely filmed movie about a super cool band reveals some of my suspicions with Gravity's Rainbow and a 5 o'clock shadow.
The concert footage songs are separated with samples of audio from an interview with Chuck Klosterman. One sample has Murphy talking about the mystique of a rock performer, and that as an audience member a performer can be propelled to a mystical level. He laments that as a performer now he pictures musicians waiting in airports, eating breakfast… normal stuff. Murphy talks earlier that he only loved a rock show when he felt the band was honest, that either they confirmed what he thought about them or that they seemed earnest in their music.
Klosterman is wise to…
I am completely unable to be objective about this one. I saw LCD Soundsystem on their final tour in Detroit (with Hot Chip opening) with a girl I was mad for at the time.
This film, recorded at LCD's final shows at Madison Square Garden documents the prep for the concert, the shows themselves, and briefly, the aftermath. There's a heartbreaking scene of James Murphy a day or a few days after the show, caressing a piece of the concert gear and breaking down in tears. That feeling--of something wonderful and rare having passed before its time--suffuses the whole film. A dedicated LCD Soundsystem fan like yer pal will probably get more out of this than a casual viewer, but it's still probably one of the greatest concert joints I've ever seen.
The "documentary" portion of this film comes across as incredibly contrived and pretentious. It's really annoying to watch.
But the concert portion is really great and one of my favorite.
One of the best bands of the decade. One of the best music documentaries of the decade.
Better taken as part of the LCD mythos, if that's something you're into; this movie presupposes that LCD Soundsystem was a monumentally important band whose one show to an ocean of white people at Madison Square Garden represented some kind of apex of importance that is never explained. It's a movie where members of Arcade Fire are sprinkled in like they're the Beatles.
Couple thoughts on this:
1. Without Chuck Klosterman, this would sink in James Murphy's casually crippling self-awareness and self-doubt. Klosterman's interview is by far the most compelling part of the film, and his questions get at the unexplained heart of LCD Soundsystem more than most critics, which is a brand of music more notable for its curation…
As a mild LCD fan, it should be noted that the two days since I've seen this film have been compiled of a well-doctrined playlist of James Murphy's prowess.
The discuss of appreciation and pretention should be seen be every person ever who's considered making art of some kind.
A great film for fans of LCD Soundsystem. Some of the choices the film makes are obviously not reality and are scripted but the live performance scenes are great.
I went into this movie knowing nothing about it other than it was a movie about music. I didn't know it was a documentary and I didn't know it was about LCD Soundsystem. If I had known that ahead of time I most definitely would not have watched it. But in retrospect I'm so glad I did.
Despite only being familiar with two songs in the entire movie I have taken so much away from this. Anyone who is an aspiring artist of any kind needs to see Shut Up and Play the Hits. It tells the simple story of a man who decides to abandon fame and fortune after realizing the lifestyle just isn't for him. But as the…
Breaking my "automatic 4.5/5 minimum if tears are shed" rule for this movie. It's pretty normal for me to get emotional at any listen of "New York, I Love You, But You're Bringing Me Down", and in the context of this film the song is presented perfectly. As an effective ending to this band (although to be completely honest I'm still not entirely sure whether it's Murphy's solo act under a stage name or an actual band) the song is effective in a way best communicated through the concert's footage.
I thought Murphy was surprisingly open and honest in his interview tape and footage. He expressed a concern I didn't expect: to paraphrase, "what if I'm ending this all now…
Could of have used less shaving and coffee machine maintenance and more JAMS.
So they do this whole "normal guy" stuff presumably to break down any misconceptions about James Murphy's humanity, as discussed in the beginning. Thing is, it was a very different time when Murphy grew up and idolized Bowie. Notably, before the Internet and social media. Although I didn't spend much time on this planet pre-internet, I think it's fair to say the nature of celebrity status has changed; the presence of social media has taken everybody down a few notches and I don't think many celebrities conjure up the same aura as celebrities of 30 years ago. Of all people, James Murphy has maybe least aura, simply because of stuff like the rhythmic "imperfections" in his vocals, the fuck yeah…
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