Miami's LCD Soundsystem Fans Get an Appetizer This Friday
Pat Mahoney goes solo at Bardot.
Courtesy of Brian Graf
Where were you when Hurricane Matthew screwed up your III Points plans?
I wasn't even in Miami. I was planning to head down from college in Jacksonville when the storm steered its cruel, windy gaze toward the Sunshine State. The six-hour drive became too dangerous to attempt as the storm grazed the coast. My ride home bailed. Instead of partying in Wynwood, I spent the weekend holed up at a friend's watching Werner Herzog documentaries and episodes of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. The storm didn't even knock out the power as it howled outside.
For most others, III Points weekend probably went better, but the festival mood was unfortunately soured by hurricane cancellations, and paramount among them was that of headliner LCD Soundsystem. James Murphy and his electronic orchestra would've been smack dab in the 305 if that punk-ass rain machine Matthew hadn't come beating down the door like a stalker ex. We could easily play the "Fuck 2016" song here, but it's a tune you're surely tired of hearing. At the very least, the bandmates wrote on Facebook that they "obviously need to figure out something in Miami when we can." But until that happens, Miamians will have something to tide them over: an appetizer of a DJ set at Bardot from one of the group's core members, drummer and multi-instrumentalist Pat Mahoney.
Part of what makes LCD Soundsystem a tremendous live band is its insistence on authentically replicating James Murphy's intricate studio assemblages onstage. That means bringing up nearly every tiny piece of the puzzle onstage and getting someone to play the part. Just watch Shut Up and Play the Hits, the documentary of the band's celebrated Madison Square Garden extravaganza, and you'll be impressed by the scale of it all.
You'll also see Mahoney, bashing away at the kit in short shorts and a white tee. He's there all night. He doesn't stop. He doesn't indulge in any John Bonham-esque showmanship. He simply drums away, forming the backbone of every superextended disco-punk freakout Murphy has up his sleeve — all the hits, from "Yeah" to "Us v Them" to "Losing My Edge." What makes drummers the greatest musicians is their dogged endurance, the ability to play the same beats over and over, all night, while their muscles cramp and scream for mercy. And when it comes to endurance, Mahoney is king. He's a human drum machine.
Had everything gone according to plan at III Points, LCD would have been one of two Mahoney-featuring acts on the festival bill: Museum of Love, his project with Run Roc label head Dennis McNany, was also scheduled to perform. Their self-titled album sends the dance-punk sound of LCD back to the early '80s, when synthpop was coming into its own and New Romantic artists such as Duran Duran and Tears for Fears rubbed up against the darker sounds of New Order and Soft Cell.
Of course, when he comes to Bardot this Friday, he'll be all by his lonesome. Don't look at that as a detriment, however — Mahoney is an accomplished DJ in his own right after years behind the decks solo and with James Murphy. His older mixes, such as the excellent Fabriclive 36 with Murphy, focused on disco and the genesis of club music. More recent sets have included Balearic beat, tropical house, and the synthy goodness that inspired Museum of Love. Expect a special brew of dance-floor salvation that might be just a bit grittier than the average throwback set. This isn't your everyday DJ juice. This is a big ol' pot of Mahoney: It's sweeter and stickier than anything else on the block, and it might just be the perfect antidote to a stressful season.
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