Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Do you believe in rapture?

Play it: Sonic Youth Rather Ripped
AOL Music Album stream

Here's a nice Rhapsody exclusive - SY's latest (Rather Ripped) one week early.

Hard to believe it's been 25 years since Sonic Youth formed (Happy Anniversary, baby) and to complement the feat (and keeping a band together 25 years is certainly a feat) Sonic Youth will release (next week) their most playful, accessible record to date. Looking at the cover, you'd think they were returning to EVOL or Confusion is Sex, as the cover art harkens back to those classic noise-fests, but Rather Ripped is hardly that. They've moved away from (fifth member?) Jim O'Rourke's production, in favor of their own with John Agnello (Dinosaur Jr, Mark Lanegan, Son Volt,) and the sound is much more straight ahead. I'm obviously not saying that they've gone MOR, this is Sonic Youth we're talking about here, but for the first time, they have an album that sounds like they're smiling.

The opening three tracks are some of their best ever. "Reena" has Kim Gordon singing with a bounce, while "Incinerate" is as close to bubblegum as Thurston Moore has ever got (which isn't very close,) and serves as Rather Ripped's ROCK song. The third track, "Do You Believe In Rapture" feels like an homage to Velvet Underground, and it might be the prettiest song Sonic Youth has ever recorded. Other highlights include the psychedelic "Turqoise Boy," the questions of "Or," and the lead single "What a Waste" which they played on the Gilmore Girls season finale. Reading this paragraph again, I notice the words bubblegum, prettiest and Gilmore Girls all used to describe Sonic Youth. Who would've ever thought that 25 years ago?

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1 comment:

drake leLane said...

Sonic Youth Rather Ripped

1. Reena
2. Incinerate
3. Do You Believe In Rapture?
4. Sleepin' Around
5. What A Waste
6. Jams Runs Free
7. Rats
8. Turquoise Boy
9. Lights Out
10. The Neutral
11. Pink Steam
12. Or
13. Eyeliner