DFA Records: LCD Soundsystem Reunion Rumors Are 'Getting a Lot of LOLs Around the Office'
James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem DJing at the DFA Winter Workout, January 18, 2015
Laura June Kirsch for the Village Voice
Update, 12/31/15: According to the New York Times, LCD Soundsystem will be reuniting (along with Guns N' Roses) in 2016 after all. Both bands will headline Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in April.
Earlier today, news broke online that LCD Soundsystem would be reuniting in the next year, five years after their much ballyhooed end. Consequence of Sound were first out of the gate with the item, citing “multiple sources” confirming the rumor. Shortly after the post, which was, as you might imagine, picked up by websites everywhere, Kristopher Petersen, the manager of DFA Records co-owned by James Murphy, promptly shut down the rumors. “hey idiots, LCD soundsystem isn’t reuniting. they’re dead, along with your good looks and cultural relevance,” he tweeted, followed by “LCD Soundsystem are not reuniting next year, you fucking morons," with a link to the CoS piece. Complicating matters was DFA retweeting the report from their Twitter account, which Petersen says he did as a goof. For their part, CoS are standing by their information, and in the meantime Billboard has chimed in with an anonymous source of their own.
I called up the frequently outspoken Petersen to ask about the rumors, and his strong pushback against the “reporting” behind it. He said he’d heard from Murphy and his manager, who tell him there is no reunion in the works.
When was the first you heard of the “reunion?”
Somebody tweeted — hold on, I got a lot of text messages coming in — someone just tweeted at me, "Hey how about this?" I googled it, saw the CoS piece, and I thought it was hilarious, and retweeted it from the DFA account. It’s getting a lot of attention. It’s still not selling any records, but it’s getting a lot of LOLs around the office.
Did they contact you or the band before the story?
No one contacted anyone at the label. They might’ve contacted James’ management; thats’a separate entity from us. Everybody blew up our customer service email and our store. I got some DMs from writers on my account, and the DFA account. I think the only publication that checked — and this will be the only time I say something nice about them — was Pitchfork. They published something not with a generic byline and quote/unquote sources. They named people and all that.
Have you talked to James about it?
Yeah. Either he’s being a real jerk to me, or… This would be a really big scam. His manager asked us to please un-retweet the article as it’s causing a lot of trouble.
You’re often critical of music content sites.
You don’t even call them publications anymore?! I’m sure like 50 percent of it is just bitterness in that there’s no music industry left to succeed in ... People seem to be more interested in concocting fantasies about things that might happen than things that are happening. I’m sure this happens in other fields as well — all this hypothetical stuff. Even this, regardless if it was true or not, they still had no cited source. They didn’t get a statement from the band’s management or anybody before filing the story. I’m sure people have offered [James] money or made an offer or something, because what bands are there left to headline Coachella or something… They’re just not a lot of big rock bands left, or bands to reunite. People were all excited about Ride lately! I’m sure some people were excited, but they're playing bigger shows now than they did when they were first around…. I guess that’s why [festivals] rely on reunions now. Out of the big mid-2000s rock bands, LCD’s one of the only ones who haven’t done it.
So you’re getting a lot of calls, but not selling any records?
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Very crassly, I’m like, "It’s good that we just repressed all those LCD records." People are like, "This is good," and I’m like "Yeah, but it’s very transient." Most of the people who retweeted it probably wouldn’t even go. It’s not like we could turn this into a positive; it’s a waste of time for everybody. We’re getting a lot of calls and will feel popular for a day or two… It’s sort of a bummer I guess.
Maybe the band will see the reaction and be like, "Maybe we should?"
I don’t know. It’s possible. Not to, like, speak out of turn, but James seems to do what he wants. And he knows people like him, I’m sure, in his heart somewhere. I sort of have the understanding that that’s probably going to be the biggest band that comes off this label — not because they’re so special, but because there’s no music industry anymore.
You’re pretty outspoken. You don’t worry about getting in trouble?
No. The whole reason I'm working at a tiny independent record label is so I can do whatever I want. Maybe someday I’ll grow up and think we’d be more successful if I didn’t burn so many bridges! James texted me and said, "Yeah, I think your tweets are hilarious, but yeah, you could you drop it." I’m like, "Yeah, that’s probably good for everybody."
Have you heard from CoS since you’ve been ripping them?
No, they did post something a little while ago that said Billboard confirmed this — but they don't have a source, they don’t have anything. I did make a joke that they will probably not be covering our releases in the future. I don't know; if they put a byline on the article at least I would know it was a person and not the staff.
So no reunion. Any other news you can break for us?
Man I wish I did. Shit, we don't even have any more records coming out this year!
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