Why Are LCD Soundsystem Fans Mad at LCD Soundsystem for Reuniting? Explained

James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem performs at Virgin Festival at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore on August 4, 2007. Bill Auth/Reuters

LCD Soundsystem is officially reuniting for Coachella, and some fans aren't happy at all. Why so much drama? We address some questions and concerns.

First of all, explain why people are angry at a stereo system.
No, no. LCD Soundsystem, the band, not the audio equipment. LCD Soundsystem, the brief but wondrous dance-punk-whatever project led by DFA Records mastermind James Murphy, which released three widely acclaimed albums between 2005 and 2010 and then split in 2011.

LCD Soundsystem! That's the band that does that one song—
The fast one? "Daft Punk Is Playing at My House." The long one? "All My Friends."

Oh, right. I heard they're reuniting.
That's right, baby. The news leaked three months ago, but now it's official: LCD Soundsystem is headlining Coachella. The band will also tour widely and release a new album "sometime this year," according to a lengthy note from Murphy.

So people are mad online that a band they love and miss is coming back and making more music?

It's kind of a long story, but here goes. LCD Soundsystem ended its run with the most dramatic and attention-grabbing gesture possible, performing a massive farewell show at Madison Square Garden in 2011. The gig was billed as LCD Soundsystem's "last show ever"; fans traveled from far and wide to see it, and many dealt with money-grubbing scalpers for the opportunity. That show became the basis for a 2012 rockumentary, Shut Up and Play the Hits.

So you do the math: Fans are realizing that what was billed as the last show ever wasn't exactly that. Then there's the timing issue. Had Murphy waited until, say, 2021, the reaction might have been more unanimously euphoric. But because it has only been half a decade—and because Coachella, with its hefty paychecks, smells like a big money opportunity—some fans feel betrayed or view it as a cash-in. Search Twitter for "LCD" and "last show" if you want to see what this looks like.

From these fans' perspective, it's a little like traveling across the country to make it to your friend Wilbur's funeral, writing a heartfelt eulogy, moving on with your life, then finding out that Wilbur was just faking his death or recording bleepy-bloop noises for subway turnstiles and also now he's about to get rich. You can choose to be mad, or you can just be thankful that you have your friend Wilbur back. (Wilbur was a really great friend.)

Wasn't it a little naïve to think that Wilb—I mean, Murphy wouldn't eventually get bored and decide to bring LCD back?

What does Murphy have to say about this?
A lot. He wrote a very long and heartfelt blog post explaining how he found himself writing a bunch of new songs, decided to make a new record, didn't feel like calling it a Murphy solo album, doesn't want the reunion to be anything close to a nostalgia tour and somehow didn't anticipate the reaction it might provoke. "If you... you feel betrayed now, then i completely understand that," Murphy wrote. He added:

to you i have to say: i'm seriously sorry. the only thing we can do now is get back into the studio and finish this record, and make it as fucking good as we can possibly make it. it needs to be better than anything we've done before, in my mind, because it won't have the help of being the first time. and we have to play better than we've ever played, frankly.

How can Murphy make it up to these betrayed fans?

I think if your band reunites less than 10 years after your advertised last show, you have to refund all the money from it.

— Stuart Berman (@stuberman) December 31, 2015

.@lcdsoundsystem an easy fix would be...anybody who has proof of going to your farewell show gets a free early download of the new album.

— Zach Hart (@welistenforyou) January 5, 2016

Which LCD Soundsystem album should I check out?
You can't go wrong. There are only three, all of them great (not including the Nike thing). But Sound of Silver, from 2007, is a bit of a masterpiece. It includes the very sad "Someone Great," the very zeitgeist-y "All My Friends" and the very quotable "New York, I Love You but You're Bringing Me Down."

Who was the first to report the LCD Soundsystem reunion?
Consequence of Sound, back in October. Other outlets disputed the report. DFA Records pretty aggressively denied it.

Did anyone else see this coming?
Yes! Prophetic Twitter user Jessica Gentile tweeted this on April 3, 2011:

2 hours in and LCD are killing it! Can't wait to see them again at the reunion at coachella 2016

— Jessica Gentile (@Volume_Knob) April 3, 2011

If you ask politely, maybe she'll let you borrow her time machine.

I want to hear a new LCD Soundsystem song.
Check out the surprise Christmas single:

Why doesn't Murphy just find another creatively fulfilling and highly lucrative diversion, like opening a wine bar in Williamsburg?

Who else is headlining Coachella alongside LCD?
Another grabby reunion act: Guns N' Roses. Also, Calvin Harris.

What bands are going to reunite in 2017?
Who knows! R.E.M.? The Walkmen? The Smiths? The Books? Oasis?

Have any other acclaimed indie acts ever been derided as sell-outs or cash-ins for reuniting and playing festivals?
See: entire history of indie rock, 2000–present day.

Actually, I was in a moderately successful and critically respected indie rock band in the mid-'90s. We're thinking of doing a reunion. How should we go about it?
Avoid the festival circuit, if you can. Tour all over. Play wherever you have fans. Make a new album and finish it before announcing the reunion; send the signal that it's not just a nostalgia run. Make sure you don't suck now. Forgive whatever bad blood between members is still lingering from the '90s. Don't fire Kim Deal.