When you think of next-generation artists liable to tribute Christine McVie in the wake of her unexpected death at age 77, LCD Soundsystem probably isn’t the first one that comes to mind. But the Fleetwood Mac singer-songwriter’s radio-ready pop hooks have been so inescapable for the last half century that even a band more likely to name-check Can than the Mac couldn’t avoid paying homage to the rock legend during a show on the day of her passing.
Playing an Amex card members-only show at Brooklyn Steel on Wednesday (Nov. 30) night, the indie dance outfit wove a bit of McVie’s Rumours side 1 closer “Songbird” into their own melancholic foray, “New York, I Love You but You’re Bringing Me Down.” Keyboard player Nancy Whang took lead vocal on the “Songbird” segment during the encore, and once the show wrapped, McVie’s Mac track “Everywhere” (which incidentally has been enjoying a chart bump thanks to a Chevy ad synch) played over the speakers as the crowd emptied into the night.
And that wasn’t the only unexpected cover to crop up during the eighth night of the band’s residency at the Brooklyn venue. For the first time ever in concert, James Murphy & Co. busted out a cover of The Human League’s “Seconds,” a harrowing gem from synth-pop group’s underrated classic Dare!. LCD released a live-in-studio cover of “Seconds” on their Electric Lady Sessions album in 2019, but this was the first time fans got to hear it live – and Murphy does a pretty convincing Philip Oakey impersonation while intoning the tragically timely chorus “It took seconds of your time to take his life / It took seconds” on that 41-year-old song about gun violence.
Prior to the show’s start, Amex card members lucky enough to score tickets were treated to an open bar and savory free burritos from El Gallo Taqueria. In case you’re thinking, “Wait, there are enough Amex card holders who love LCD Soundsystem to fill an 1,800-capacity music venue?”, don’t forget this a Brooklyn crowd — and an East Williamsburg one at that. Sure, there were some boomers and zoomers, but the mostly millennial crowd dancing itself clean certainly remembers the pre-Apple Store days of Williamsburg when the group’s 2010 masterpiece This Is Happening could be heard booming out of any of the now-shuttered dive bars on Bedford Avenue. So naturally, the self-parodying “Losing My Edge” was one of the most enthusiastically received songs in the set list – after all, it’s become a painfully resonant anthem for aging hipsters everywhere who aren’t quite ready to throw in the towel on home breweries and 45s-only DJ sets. But hey, when LCD is on stage, the old days feel brand new again