The show was in support of LCD Soundsystem's recent comeback record, American Dream. About a quarter of the set drew from its tracks, but a sense of nostalgia, a little more sweet than bitter, hung in the air. With the album only released a few weeks ago, it was interesting to see what connected with the audience. "Call The Police" has one of those mass appeal lines—"We all know this is nothing"—that Murphy is so good at writing, and the track built nicely on the momentum of "Get Innocuous!" and "I Can Change," which opened the set. "American Dream" and "I Used To," both slower with rich lyrics and instrumentation, are part of the reason I thought American Dream was the best album the group has written, but here they lacked some of the oomph needed to move such a large number of people. "Tonite" didn't have this problem: Murphy started it by playing a cowbell solo, leading into the sort of four-on-the-floor stomp London crowds love.
Gigs are often about groups of friends having a sweaty, emotional moment together, and LCD Soundsystem are particularly great at delivering these. After bringing "Tonite" to a climax, the group went straight into "Home," one of the best bits of the night. As the gigantic disco ball above the stage lit up in time with the chorus, my irritation at the guy next to me with loose elbows melted away. The band could play for another 30 years and "Someone Great" would still elicit mass hugs and singalongs. "Dance Yrself Clean" doesn't have the same emotive quality, but it really bangs. The sound wasn't too bad for a venue of Alexandra Palace's size, the system handling the extra bass the band pumped into the track when it finally dropped.
But for most people here, the tearjerker was always going to be "All My Friends." I watched a group of men and women in their 50s kissing each other on the lips and jumping up and down as it brought the night to a close. It was tough to reconcile this scene with the memory of LCD Soundsystem being the hippest band in the world back in the mid-'00s, but as Murphy himself is only too aware, things change and people grow old.