Hear James Murphy’s Subway Station Music

February 24, 2014 | Andy Cush

On Chicago public radio in November, James Murphy said he’s been working for fourteen years on an idea that would make NYC subway stations musical. Now, Wall Street Journal has a clip of the former LCD Soundsystem frontman discussing the project further and previewing what it might sound like.

In Murphy’s vision, each turnstile  would produce a unique tone as it spins, so that rather than the mechanical clatter we’re used to, you’d hear a pleasing chord as you entered and exited a station. Different stations and lines would be tuned to different musical keys.

“It’s an opportunity for music. Why not make the worst times on the subway the best times?” Murphy asks in the video. “The more people going through, the more times the turnstile gets turned — if you have different notes that are all in agreement, it would make music.”

Unfortunately the MTA isn’t interested. Spokesman Adam Lisberg told the WSJ the unpleasant sound of turnstiles is due to “natural technical variation and we really don’t care.”

If you’d like to support the project, you can do so by signing a petition here.