And on the subject of running and tunes…

…those who indulge in both exercising to music and the genre most commonly called “electronica” (which overlaps substantially with”dance,” “house,” and “funk”) might like the 45-minute, 58-second release by LCD Soundsystem titled “45:33,” which LCD creator James Murphy arranged specifically for Nike after the athletic-wear giant approached him about a project tailored toward melody-driven runners. The result is a disco-driven track released in October 2006 that retails for $9.99.
There’s a funny story at work here, one in which Nike’s involvement somehow makes sense. Last October, Murphy — whose initial album, also titled LCD Soundsystem, led to two Grammy nominations in 2005 — told Amy Phillips of Pitchforkmedia.com:

“The idea, to make a long piece of music built around an arc designed for running, appealed to me because it was so anathematic to what you’re typically asked to do as an artist: make easily digestible lumps of music for albums, or the radio, or whatever. I’d been thinking of the records I love in which people made one ‘song’ that took up the entire LP, and realizing that releasing something like this would otherwise be a virtual impossibility for me, I became excited when the Nike+ project came along.

“Our band, LCD, when on tour tends to do a lot of running–mainly to keep sane and resist the inevitability of turning into a bus-bound potato, filled with all that makes one sick. When I was approached to make this ‘run,’ two different members of the band told me that they ran to two remixes I’d done as DFA– the UNKLE [‘In a State’] and Gorillaz [‘Dare’] mixes– which both were long, sprawling, organic dance songs that eased from section to section for 10+ minutes each. So, the gauntlet had been thrown down to make something longer that was well designed to reward and push at good intervals of a run.

However, Murphy later changed his tune, telling the UK Guardian in March “I don’t even jog” and that he’d lied his ass off for the sake of the Nike deal.
In any event, you can listen to full versions of several LCD songs on its MySpace page, although you need a MySpace account (free) in order to access the page. “45:33” is (legally) available only through the Nike Music Store on iTunes.

5 thoughts on “And on the subject of running and tunes…”

  1. Far be it from me to contribute to any delinquent behavior but that Nike song can be easily downloaded for free using a basic web search.

  2. The section between about 9 and 20 minutes is an instrumental remix of “Someboy Great” and I really like it. However, does Nike realize that running to 120 beats a minute puts you perfectly out of phase with one’s own footfalls, which occur at about 180 per? I don’t actually whap my feet to the beat, but…well, sometimes I do but I won’t admit to it.
    Come to think of it, it’s probably best to run to totally-out-of-phasebeats than to ones that are close enough to tempt, like 84/168 a minute or something. On the rare occasions I listen to techno, all of which is around 120 a minute by definition, I zone out thanks to the level of discordance and can enjoy both the music and the run, just not as a unit.

  3. I always thought all runners were listening to the Chariots of Fire theme by Vangelis.

  4. Only the ones wearing plain white T-shirts and white boxer shorts.
    The one rule is not to listen to any songs that mention running itself, even though the ones that do are invariably invoking metaphors, not athletic pursuits. (Well, except for “Fire on the Mounatin” by the Dead.) No Jackson Browne, no Bruce Springsteen, no Pink Floyd, no Flock of Seagulls.

  5. Only the ones wearing plain white T-shirts and white boxer shorts.
    The one rule is not to listen to any songs that mention running itself, even though the ones that do are invariably invoking metaphors, not athletic pursuits. (Well, except for “Fire on the Mounatin” by the Dead.) No Jackson Browne, no Bruce Springsteen, no Pink Floyd, no Flock of Seagulls.

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