James Murphy has been tangentially involved in the coffee world for years, first as a fan and then selling his personal espresso blend at the Blue Bottle shop in Brooklyn’s Boerum Hill. Now he’s taking his caffeine obsession to the next level, opening a new café in Williamsburg with the team behind his other spot, the Four Horsemen.  

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The café opened in September, with seating arrangements designed to encourage conversation. Image: Damien Lafargue

The entrance to Daymoves is unmarked, down a long hallway next door to the restaurant (“keep going,” the website says). Dispel those notions of headphone-wearing patrons riveted to their screens, though—contrary to current expectations around modern-day coffee shops, there’s no Wi-Fi, and laptops are highly discouraged in favor of conversation, reading (preferably in print form), and, of course, plenty of music.

As you’d expect from a place with a rockstar partner, the soundtrack plays a big role in setting the mood, and the LCD Soundsystem frontman took the audio seriously, overseeing the musical choices and designing the custom system itself. That includes big speakers, “a similar but beefier version” of the ones he uses in his studio, Murphy told Grub Street, plus ‘70s-era amplifiers that can handle up to 500 watts and a Techniques SL1200 turntable, which will spin records from his personal collection during the day. (For now, the space is available for private events in the evenings, and the team is still hammering out an after-hours plan for public consumption.)

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Pastries from Bushwick bakery L’Imprimerie are the only food currently available, though the menu should be expanding soon.  Image: Damien Lafargue

As for that coffee, the beans will come from a rotating selection of roasters as well as two mainstays, Sey Coffee, based in the borough, and Manhattan’s Café Integral. (There’s tea too, from the city’s Tea Dealers.) The aim, Murphy explained to Billboard, is that people “can have coffee made for them at a really high level, without feeling like someone is yelling at them about how cool their technique is." 

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Coffee will come from a selection of roasters as well as two New York-based companies. Image: Damien Lafargue

While Four Horsemen chef Nick Curtola works out the menu, food options are limited to pastries from Bushwick bakery L’Imprimerie, but he eventually plans to introduce light, veg-forward fare that can be served all day. “We’re not trying to do heavy brunch food,” he told Grub Street. “I’m not trying to compete with a bodega sandwich.”

Corner counter seat at DayMoves with coffee and croissant
The vibrant setting is intended to be a breath of fresh air. Image: Damien Lafargue

Featuring a European-inflected design sense (think: a customized Italian bar from the 1970s, a mirrored skylight, and daily newspapers at your disposal) with a Brooklyn twist (mismatched furniture, exposed brick, and those colorful speakers), the space was intended to be respite from the crush of daily life. As Murphy told Billboard, “[we want] guests who come to feel like they’re breathing and resting up for their day – getting stronger – in that way which is often unique to a beautiful lobby cafe in a great, small hotel in some city you’ve traveled a long way to experience." 

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