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James Murphy: "With Dance Music, People Are Being Treated as if They're Really Dumb"

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Photo by Ian Witlen
Check out Crossfade's full 73-photo slideshow from III Points Festival Day Two.

On How DJ'ing Is Like Making a Sandwich

"I don't feel like I want thousands of people looking at me while I'm doing the equivalent of making a sandwich. [crowd laughs] It's very similar. [Murphy chortles] And really, it's like watching me, for three hours, make 200 sandwiches. But they're still looking at me, and I'm like, 'It does nothin'. This is what it is. I might, like, scratch my neck. Or lose my balance temporarily. That's about it.'"

James Murphy on His Post-LCD Soundsystem Life

"There are a lot of things that have happened over the past year, and they all seem to be coming to fruition at the same time, as a sort of accidental explanation for 'Hey, what is that guy doing now?'

"It was like, 'He just quit, and it looked like he just hung out and he was in the weird movie with the Tim & Eric guys.'"

On Finally Collaborating With Arcade Fire

"We've been trying to do a record together since Neon Bible.

"I met them a long, long time ago after our respective first records. My band was playing a show in Montreal, and a bunch of them came down, and they were very nice. And we started talking about doing a record together, and we met again after Neon Bible, but it was exactly when I was making my second LCD record. So we were like, 'Ahh, crap! Next time!' Then the next time rolled around, and I took a year off, but so did they. Then Suburbs was the same time as my third record.

"So it kept being, like, impossible. But we've toured together. And we've become, over the years, good friends. Our band and their band were people who saw each other a lot. So this time, I was not in a band anymore. [laughs] And they were like, 'Hey, we're gonna give you a whole lot of warning about when this is going to happen.'

"It's been really nice, because their manager did not call my manager who sent an email. It was literally just talking to them and wanting to do it. And we didn't know what we were going to do either. We kinda just both decided that we'd go up there [to Montreal] and hang out -- maybe I'll work on something and maybe I won't; we'll see if it fits. That was the gist. And it worked out. So I stayed."

On the Original DFA Studio and Building His New Studio

"Juan [Maclean] was in [the DFA Studio] two days ago. I was in there the day before that. And Museum of Love, which is Pat Mahoney's band, was in there this weekend. So we use it all the time.

"But I'm building another studio, because... [laughs] I can't get in there anymore. Because it was never public; it was only [open to] myself and the label. Then I realized that it was a job for somebody. If we made it public, people that I cared about could work there and make a living. So we made it public. And it was good for people.

"Then I was like, 'I totally have to do this remix.' And they were like, 'I can pencil you in in November.' And I was like, 'I need a new studio.' So [the DFA Studio] still exists, and I still work there, but I'm making a small, little, less-intense space."

On When His New Studio Will Open

"Somewhere between February and never. You know, New York City construction. So give or take a millennia. Umm, it depends."

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S. Pajot
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