“Yeah, I’m losing my edge
I’m losing my edge
The kids are coming up from behind…”
It’s hard to believe that this summer marks the 18th birthday of LCD Soundsystem‘s Losing My Edge, released in July 2002 – a fable about maintaining musical relevance in a world being taken over by “better-looking people, with better ideas and more talent… who are actually really really nice”.
For 909originals, the summer of 2002 was occupied with visits to Ibiza (twice!) and absorbing the output from record labels like International Deejay Gigolos, BPitch Control and Tortured, while at the same time maintaining a particular soft spot for James Murphy’s debut… after all, it was on the same label (DFA) that had put out The Rapture’s House of Jealous Lovers just a few months previously. 🙂
Losing My Edge was, and still is, is an infectious track. With a chugging, incessant rhythm, and lyrics that reference just the right amount of ‘street cred’ artists to keep it from swaying into hipster territory, it draws you in, with Murphy’s protagonist getting more and more desperate as the track continues… an aural hypochondriac at the dawn of a new century.
“I hear you’re buying a synthesizer and an arpeggiator and are throwing your computer out the window because you want to make something real. You want to make a Yaz record…”
Describing the origins of Losing My Edge in a 2006 interview, James Murphy described the track as the tale of someone being “horrified by [their] own silliness,” telling ireallylovemusic, “When I was DJing, playing Can, Liquid Liquid, ESG, all that kind of stuff, I became kind of cool for a moment, which was a total anomaly. And when I heard other DJs playing similar music I was like: ‘Fuck! I’m out of a job! These are my records!’ But it was like someone had crept into my brain and said all these words that I hate. Did I make the records? Did I fuck! So, I started becoming horrified by my own attitude.
“I had this moment of glory though. People would use me to DJ just to get them cool. They’d be like ‘It’s the cool rock disco guy’ and this was really weird. And to be honest I was afraid that this new found coolness was going to go away and that’s where ‘Losing My Edge’ comes from.”
With so many artists name checked in the track, it was inevitable that somebody would put together a playlist of all those featured… and Spotify’s Chris Stoneman has come up with the peachiest of the lot, which includes a single track from each, in chronological order (garage rockers The Sonics get four tracks, in keeping with their repeated mention at the song’s close).
Fancy hearing Daft Punk’s Da Funk merge into The Beach Boys’ I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times, or 10CC’s glam rock stomper Rubber Bullets segue into Eric B and Rakim? Look no further. 🙂