Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sonic Death

Oh man. This playlist I have on computer has Sonic Death, a live album by Sonic Youth from their really early years, on it. I forgot about it and had it playing in the background when suddenly Sonic Death comes on, an hour of solid noise, alternate guitar tunings, live extended versions of the songs from "Confusion is Sex/Kill Yr. Idols", and noise based on alternate guitar tunings that's been fucked with in the studio, sped up slowed down, chopped up and put together again in new ways. Mixed with snippets of the band talking, some of which have similarly been fucked with.

Quite amazing. I love the sound on "Confusion is Sex/Kill Yr. Idols" but the thing was that there wasn't that much material available from that era. Sonic Death fills that hole."Bad Moon Rising", their next album is great too, but it doesn't have the raw chaos that "Confusion is Sex" has. The live album amps up the raw, primal, chaos to unheard of levels, leaving you thinking "What the fuck was that?" in the most positive sense, a sort of awe at the kind of sonic assault that you've just witnessed.

"Screaming Fields of Sonic Love", their compilation album from the early to mid years, gets my vote as being the best selection of Sonic Youth songs on one CD that's out there.

I first heard Sonic Death in the basement of this house that a drug dealer lived in, and it was really strange to hear the things that first got me interested in Sonic Youth again after all these years.

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