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DFA Records is an independent record label and production team, launched in September 2001 by Mo' Wax co-founder Tim Goldsworthy, musician James Murphy, and manager Jonathan Galkin. The label has an exclusive distribution deal with major record label EMI.


James Murphy and Tim Goldsworthy met while working in New York on the David Holmes album Let's Get Killed. After the recording was completed, Goldsworthy stayed in New York, and the two began to throw parties in the Lower East Sidemarker. They wished to start a record label, but it was not until they met Jonathan Galkin, who subsequently quit his event-production job to run the label that it took off.

DFA Records began on a series of 12" single vinyl releases starting with The Rapture's "House of Jealous Lovers" and The Juan Maclean's "By The Time I Get To Venus". "House of Jealous Lovers" went on to sell 7500 copies. Many of the early releases of DFA's catalog were released in Europe through Trevor Jackson's Output Recordings. After completing production on The Rapture's debut full-length album Echoes, DFA began to shop around the album. Although The Rapture eventually signed to Universal Music Group, the DFA label secured a deal with EMI for distribution of its acts outside the United States, along with several distributors within the U.S.

The label has grown steadily since, producing full-length albums for its ever-growing roster of artists, as well as releasing a selection of singles and compilations on their label. Notable releases include The Rapture's EP "House of Jealous Lovers", the twice-Grammy nominated debut of James Murphy's band LCD Soundsystem and its follow up Sound of Silver. DFA-label compilation albums include The DFA Remixes - Chapter Two from October 2006, a companion pieces to the earlier The DFA Remixes – Chapter One. Signed artists represented on such albums include The Rapture, The Juan Maclean, Black Dice, Shit Robot, Delia Gonzalez & Gavin Russom, J.O.Y., Pixeltan, Black Leotard Front, Hot Chip, and LCD Soundsystem.

As a production team, the DFA have produced and remixed artists including Radio 4, Le Tigre, N.E.R.D., Soulwax, Blues Explosion, Nine Inch Nails, Automato, Gorillaz, UNKLE, and The Chemical Brothers. They even spent an afternoon writing a song with Britney Spears.

Death From Abroad

In 2007 DFA Records started an imprint label entitled Death From Abroad. This offshot is used to release 12" singles by artists not based in North America, such as Mock & Toof and ALTZ. The imprint also released a CD compilation of tracks released on the Berlinmarker based Supersoul Recordings.

Name dispute

The label's original name was Death From Above Records, dating from Murphy's nickname for the soundsystem he had helped build for Six Finger Satellite. This name was deemed inappropriate for a New York Citymarker-based label, and subsequently shortened to its abbreviation DFA, following the September 11, 2001 attacks.

In 2004, DFA Records forced the Canadianmarker duo Death From Above to change their name to Death from Above 1979. Murphy explained his side of the story in a 2005 interview with Pitchfork Media:

Sound and influence

DFA could be seen as the center of the dance-punk genre. As well as Murphy's LCD Soundsystem the label is currently home to The Juan Maclean, Hot Chip (North America only), Shit Robot, Delia Gonzalez & Gavin Russom, Prinzhorn Dance School, Booji Boy High, Shocking Pinks, Holy Ghost!, Hercules and Love Affair, Still Going, Syclops and YACHT. They are also jointly releasing music by with fellow New York City based label Rong Music, by artists such as Free Blood and Woolfy. The label has also reissued the first album by Athens, Georgiamarker based new wave band Pylon, the first time it has been available on CD.

The Dance-punk genre is somewhat of a resurgence of New York's underground scene circa 1978-1982. The influence of bands like Talking Heads, Liquid Liquid, ESG, and Blondie can be heard throughout the DFA catalog, as well as British electronica pioneers, New Order. Rather than retread, however, the DFA have taken the live dance music of the time and infused the techniques and themes with a modern aesthetic—alternately faster, heavier, dubbier, noisier, and generally more intense than their influences.





The following outlines production credits to The DFA (Murphy and Goldsworthy), and is not a list of recordings released by DFA Records.


  • "Deceptacon" (DFA remix) for Le Tigre, on Remix (Mr. Lady · 2001)
  • "Orange Alert" (DFA remix) for Metro Area, on "Dance Reaction" (Source · 2002)
  • "Dance to the Underground" (The DFA version) for Radio 4, on "Dance to the Underground" (City Slang · 2002)
  • "Emerge" (DFA version) for Fischerspooner, on "Emerge" (Capitol · 2002)
  • "Destination: Overdrive" (DFA remix) for Chromeo, on "Destination: Overdrive" (Turbo · 2003)
  • "Rise" (DFA remix) for Delia Gonzalez & Gavin Russom, on "El Monte"/"Rise" (DFA · 2003)
  • "In a State" (DFA remix) for UNKLE, on "In a State" (Mo' Wax · 2003)
  • "Shake Your Coconuts" (DFA mix) and (DFA Instrumental mix) for Junior Senior, on "Shake Your Coconuts" (Atlantic · 2003)
  • "Sister Saviour" (DFA remix) and (DFA remix instrumental), and "Echoes" (DFA remix) for The Rapture, on "Sister Saviour" (Output · 2003)
  • "Sunplus" (DFA remix) for J.O.Y., on DFA Compilation #2 (DFA · 2004)
  • "Get Up/Say What" (DFA remix) for Pixeltan, on "Get Up/Say What" (single) (DFA · 2004)
  • "She Wants to Move" (DFA remix) for N.E.R.D., on "She Wants to Move" (Virgin · 2004)
  • "Mars, Arizona" (DFA remix) for Blues Explosion, on "Crunchy" EP (Mute · 2005)
  • "Dare" (DFA remix) for Gorillaz, on "Dare" (Parlophone · 2005)
  • "Another Excuse" (DFA remix) for Soulwax, on "NY Excuse" (PIAS · 2005)
  • "The Hand That Feeds" (DFA remix) for Nine Inch Nails, on "The Hand That Feeds" (DFA remixes) and "Only" (Interscope · 2005)
  • "Just Like We (Breakdown)" (DFA remix) for Hot Chip, on "Over & Over"/"Just Like We (Breakdown)" (Astralwerks · 2005)
  • "Smiling Off" (DFA remix) for Black Dice, on "Smiling Off" (DFA · 2005)
  • "The Boxer" (DFA Version) for The Chemical Brothers, on "The Boxer" (Virgin · 2005)
  • "(Far From) Home" (DFA remix) for Tiga, on "(Far From) Home" (PIAS · 2006)
  • "Colours" (DFA remix) for Hot Chip, on "Colours" (EMI · 2006)
  • "Slide In" (DFA remix) for Goldfrapp, on "Fly Me Away" (Mute · 2006)
  • "Relevee" (DFA remix) for Delia Gonzalez & Gavin Russom, on "Revelee" (DFA · 2006)
  • "Springfield" (DFA Remix) for Arthur Russell, on "Springfield" (Audika · 2006)
  • "My Love" (DFA Remix) for Justin Timberlake, on "My Love" (Zomba · 2006)
  • "Frontline" (DFA Remix) for Captain, on "Frontline" (EMI · 2006)
  • "Paper Planes" (DFA Remix) for M.I.A. on Paper Planes - EP (XL Records - 2008)
  • "Tomorrow" (DFA Remix) for Clinic on "Tomorrow" (Domino Records - 2008)

See also


External links

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