LCD Soundsystem Isn't Happy About These Vinyl Reissues
It's not often that re-releases from a band's back catalog prompt a public statement saying that it isn't "announcing s***."
That's exactly what happened early Monday evening, after Rhino — the well-regarded reissue arm of Warner Music Group — said it would be re-releasing LCD Soundsystem's self-titled first album, its Nike-sponsored release 45:33, third "proper" album This Is Happening, and live studio album London Sessions on vinyl.
The band wrote in a statement that it "had no idea that these were even coming out. Just buy the records from DFA [the label co-founded by LCD Soundsystem frontman and principal songwriter James Murphy] like you have been able to for years." It goes on to poke fun at Rhino's press release, which referred to LCD Soundsystem as originating in London, despite them being one of the more famous New York bands of the new millennium. (Murphy owns a wine bar in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.)
Rhino's announcement was ostensibly meant to dovetail with LCD Soundsystem's forthcoming new album, which Murphy said is fully finished, and a week-long string of dates at Brooklyn music venue Brooklyn Steel.
If you're confused, you're not alone.
A representative for DFA Records tried to clarify the situation to NPR, writing in an email that the label has "no idea, no one asked us. We have always made the vinyl ourselves in North America, with the permission of EMI Records/Parlophone UK, who LCD Soundsystem had a deal with.
"When EMI and Universal [Music Group, now the world's largest record conglomerate] merged, Parlophone was divested to Warner Bros, who own Rhino. They just freely took the art from Warner UK, who had always made their own vinyl overseas. Rhino just put it on the assembly line and out it came. We aren't asking them to delete the title, we are asking them to not sell it in the USA." [Note: We believe the representative means Warner Music Group, not Warner Bros. Records — we've reached out for clarification.]
On that last point, at least, DFA should be able to rest easily: Rhino's reissues are intended only for those outside of the U.S. (As of press time, Rhino U.K.'s website had no mention of the band.) Even so, all the label and the band can do is make their wishes clear, since Warner Music Group controls those recordings.
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