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LCD Soundsystem's front man dreams of musical subway stations

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subway-metro-new york

LCD Soundsystem might be no more, but the man behind the chart-topping band, James Murphy, wants to inject even more musical life into New York City’s subway system. Speaking to Sound Opinions, Murphy says he has been fighting for 14 years to make all the subway stations in New York City create music. His aspirational idea involves creating a different set of dominant keys for every subway station so that a piece of music is created at each station that’s unique and can be identified by passengers. Although there are plenty of violinists and jazz ensembles that perform regularly on the transit system, Murphy’s idea involves creating music from turnstiles.

"There would be a thing that would make a beep of a certain note," he explains, adding that it would generate a random note based on a percentage to "hopefully make a really beautiful piece of music." The end result would allow turnstiles to create their own music, a spectacle to behold during rush hour. Each line in the subway system would then create its own piece of music with different chords that would intersect with other lines. It sounds like an intriguing and potentially beautiful idea for the millions of passengers who pass through the subway turnstiles each week, but it’s lacking traction. "I thought [Mayor] Bloomberg would give me a hand, but it's really hard to get through to them," explains Murphy. "It's such a brutal city, and I love it, but one little gift of kindness would be really nice."