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Sonic Youth

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Editors’ Notes

Sonic Youth's first EP gives just a hint of what the group would become over the next few decades. Released at the tail end of New York City's downtown No Wave scene, this EP's aggressive approach has one foot in rock 'n' roll and the other in avant-garde expressionism. The sound seeks to replicate the grind of living in NYC in the early '80s, before gentrification remodeled the city. "The Burning Spear" is the nearest Sonic Youth comes to an anthem here, with Kim Gordon's anti-vocals and low-slung bass lines at the center. "I Dreamed I Dream" shows where the quieter side of Sonic Youth would blossom. Drummer Richard Edson became an actor (Stranger Than Paradise, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Do the Right Thing) while the remaining three would add different drummers and slog on as a controversial underground band that cracked the mainstream. Seven live cuts here give a good indication of what a concert was like, and an early demo of "Where the Red Fern Grows Early" rounds off the set.

Customer Reviews

Sonic Youth (EP) (Review)

Well for the Sonic Youth completist or for No-Wave historians.This is a great album to get.It's a great retrospect to Sonic Youth's beginning and there roots.Though the EP isn't exactly like the rest of the albums in the Sonic Youth Catalog.This record is a bit mellow with a Mellon collie feeling and vibe.It's not exactly the most experimental record but it's defiantly Sonic Youth at there cleanest tunings and calmest.The record features very standard tuning of playing by Thurston Moore and Lee Ranaldo.With a funk style of bass playing by Kim Gordon.And it's topped with simple drum beats by Richard Edson.All together the album can be very interesting if given a listen.

Biography

Formed: 1981 in New York, NY

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Sonic Youth were one of the most unlikely success stories of underground American rock in the '80s. Where contemporaries R.E.M. and Hüsker Dü were fairly conventional in terms of song structure and melody, Sonic Youth began their career by abandoning any pretense of traditional rock & roll conventions. Borrowing heavily from the free-form noise experimentalism of the Velvet Underground and the Stooges, and melding it with a performance art aesthetic borrowed from the New York post-punk avant-garde,...
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