Articles tagged with james murphy

Top 5 from 2004 #1: NY Excuse / Another Excuse by Soulwax

November 21

My choice for the best song from 2004 to dance to might be a little bit controversial, as it’s not one of the most popular songs from that year, but it’s one you’ve doubtlessly heard on a dancefloor somewhere. Belgium’s Soulwax released Any Minute Now in 2004, and for the track “NY Excuse,” enlisted the help of Nancy Whang of LCD Soundsystem / Juan Maclean / guest vocalist par excellence. It’s a piece of electropop perfection, so reminiscent of the vestiges of electroclash but by 2004 somehow fresher and more fun than that whole movement ever was. Whang’s vocals are fun, ridiculous, silly, angry, all at once, and the song’s rollercoaster synths rise and rise and rise to a huge crescendo. Not only is the original fantastic, but later in 2004, what might be the definitive version of the track, “Another Excuse,” featuring the remixing assistance of the DFA, aka James Murphy and Tim Goldsworthy. Behind their steady hands, the track becomes a haunted house ride, veering between dark disco alleyways, down creepy neon-lit avenues, and seemingly hitting an out of control hairpin turn every few measures. It’s one of the DFA’s best works (and that’s saying a lot) and a song that never gets old, never sounds anything less than perfect for the moment you slip it on.

Best of 2004
#1 – “NY Excuse” / “Another Excuse” – Soulwax
#2 – “Banquet” – Bloc Party
#3 – “Hounds of Love” – the Futureheads
#4 – “I Predict a Riot” – the Kaiser Chiefs
#5 – “I Disappear” – the Faint

In preparing for our upcoming party Head On: 2014 vs 2004, we’re each counting down our 5 favorite songs from our respective years. I’ll be representing 2004 so my task is a pretty fun one for blogging. I thought about how to decide which 5 songs were best. I decided to pick the 5 best songs from 2004 to dance to, rather than just my 5 favorites or something, because that would get obscure and include stuff like Shocking Pinks. Some of these songs I remember dancing to in 2004, some I was playing at dance parties and loved the way people danced.

April 24

Believe me, I’m as shocked as you are that I’m blogging about a Deadmau5 song.

On its own, Deadmau5 stands for everything that I hate about music that tries to make you dance. It’s bland. It’s uninteresting. I don’t get it. And quite frankly, I don’t want to get it. Deadmau5 is the McDonald’s Big Mac of dance music – some people love this shit, but I don’t want anything to do with it.

However, this is a sun-kissed Madeon remix. And it completely changes everything you may or may not know about this song.

When I was at Coachella, I saw the 18-year-old French DJ perform in the Sahara. It wasn’t even close: at a festival where I witnessed great sets from Pulp, Radiohead, Jacques Lu Cont, Florence & the Machine and Bon Iver, Madeon emerged at the top of the musical scrap heap with the biggest beaming smile I’ve ever seen in a live musical performance. Madeon completely aced his time on the stage, coming off as a little kid grooving wildly in front of a bedroom boombox. There was no ego. Only smiles – and that’s how this song feels to me.

What I learned at Coachella is that Madeon is the future. I’m fully convinced that he’s going to be the voidfiller that replaces James Murphy in my dance music universe. Nearly a year after LCD Soundsystem’s breakup, I was trying to figure out how I was going to recover.

This is how.

Raise your gun. Raise your weapon. Dance real hard.

– Mister Disco