Origin Blogger: Shut Up & Play The Hits
Sydney Opera House marked the last night of the Vivid LIVE festival with a trip to the movies. In partnership with Sydney Film Festival, they screened the Australian premiere of Shut Up and Play The Hits, a documentary marking the farewell concert of New York rockers LCD Soundsytem.
The band played their swan song to a capacity 18,000 crowd at Madison Square Gardens in April 2011. The film follows the band’s lynchpin, James Murphy during the week leading up to this finale, to the epic four hour show itself and the aftermath of the following day.
It’s a fine piece of film making, moving poignantly from pre-concert expectations to the reality of Murphy’s post LCD world, with a great collection of live performance clips interspersed between. It will certainly be of interest to the band’s ardent fans, but you can still come to this film if you know nothing of the LCD story.
Surprisingly, the Concert Hall makes for a great cinematic experience. The film plays well on the huge screen that has been erected above the stage, allowing you to feel like you’re amongst the screaming fans during the concert scenes.
The screening is followed by a Q&A session with (the now former) LCD drummer Pat Mahoney, conducted by Triple J’s Zan Rowe. As the interviewer points out, Mahoney is sadly not dressed in the short shorts the audience has witnessed him drumming in for the majority of the film. It is interesting to hear his experience given the film’s highly James-centric narrative. When asked about the process of making the documentary, particularly during the concert itself, he answers, “I didn’t notice the cameras at the funeral,” An answer that tied in nicely with the opening line of the film, “If it’s a funeral… Let’s have the best funeral ever.”
With it’s great music and exploration of the themes of coping with endings and the driving motivations behind the crucial decisions we make in life, it is a fitting choice for the closing night of the festival.
Written by Grace Kirupa