File under Indie Powers Used for Good. For the 36th volume of its Fabriclive series, Fabric tapped LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy and Pat Mahoney, a duo that has been DJing together for roughly a year and possibly perplexing a fair portion of the audiences by not relying on the kind of rhythmic post-punk that has informed their own music. Fair enough: the path from "North American Scum" to Donald Byrd's Isaac Hayes-produced "Love Has Come Around" (included here) is a lot less direct than the path from "Losing My Edge" to the Fall. Mixed with a Bozak -- a standard early mixer used with the basic two-turntable setup -- and aided when needed by the Logic program, Murphy and Mahoney's set tends to have the feel of an on-the-fly gig with occasionally imperfect beat-matching and the sound of actual vinyl being spun. The selections are very inspired, ranging from tracks that are well-known among disco freaks (Instant Funk's "I Got My Mind Made Up," Was [Not Was]' "Tell Me That I'm Dreaming," Love Committee's "Just as Long as I've Got You") to less-known or less-played cuts (GQ's "Lies," Chic's "I Feel Your Love Comin' On," Jackson Jones' "I Feel Good Put Your Pants On"). Only a few were made during the last 20 years, but they are just as relevant: Daniel Wang's years-ahead-of-its-time sample-and-loop-driven "Like Some Dream (I Can't Stop Dreaming)," Baby Oliver (aka Morgan Geist of Metro Area)'s loony "Primetime (Uptown Express)," LCD Soundsystem's practically all-percussion "Hippie Priest Bum-Out," Still Going's rather nice piano house/electro mutant "Still Going Theme." Disco purists might be miffed that two relative newcomers are meddling with their
music and have been granted this type of high-profile platform, but there is a real upside in this disc's potential as a gateway into a very rich and -- despite excellent books and compilations that have come out during the past several years -- still largely misunderstood music form, at least for those younger listeners who are open-minded enough. And who could have a problem with that? (Well, secret-handshake snobs -- that's who.) A wide range of potential next stops for those who are just getting into disco: Larry Levan's Live at the Paradise Garage, Frankie Knuckles' Choice: A Collection of Classics (especially its first disc), Danny Krivit's Grass Roots, and -- if you tend to favor this set's weirder moments -- Geist's Unclassics.