Archive for sonic youth

A.C. Temple – Sourpuss (Blast First) 1989

Posted in A.C. Temple, Music with tags , , , on October 27, 2010 by noisenoisenoise

Since starting this blog in June 2007 I have accumulated a huge number of CD’s. Just obscene amounts to be frank. I went from storing CD’s in this 20 drawer purpose-built cabinet I found to warehousing them in multiple locations around my house. It got a bit out of control. Three weeks ago my second kid was born and once we got him home I realised just how little room we have and many of these CD’s needed to go. I was fucking brutal. So far, over 100 CD’s have left  the house – the ones I couldn’t be bothered listing on ebay went to my local rip-off indie store for store credit. During my cull I found something I completely forgot that I owned – A.C. Temples Sourpuss. A record which had never made it to my ipod.  Never heard of them I here you say. Fair enough. If I wasn’t such a label whore in my younger years I wouldn’t have either but listening to this record with fresh ears 20 years after I first bought it I am amazed at how great it sounds. The band themselves came from Sheffield and formed in 1985. They released four albums in all and Sourpuss was their third. Their wikipekdia entry says they were too late for post-punk and too early for grunge. I think that description is crap. A.C. Temple were a great dissonant guitar band and it is a shame they never made it – sadly not even into cult status. The Sonic Youth vibe saturates Sourpuss and I reckon they might be the only band that ever came close to capturing that Sonic Youth guitar work without being Sonic Youth. I’m hanging onto this one – although I’m not going to wait another twenty years to listen to it again. If you want to check out the one’s I’m not hanging on to my ebay name is manitobahill.

Sonic Youth – Silver Session for Jason Knuth (SKR) 1998

Posted in Drone, Music, noise, sonic youth with tags , , , on March 21, 2010 by noisenoisenoise

I’ve never been entirely convinced of the more Avant Garde side of Sonic Youth. I’ve followed them through most of their periods, faithfully buying each new release. For some reason I never dabbled with the SYR series until I picked up the thing they did with Merzbow at the Rokslide festival. Maybe the reason for my lack of adventure when it comes to experimental  Sonic youth is because I don’t think I’ve ever read a review that does anything but treat these releases with stark indifference.

Jason Knuth was a Sonic Youth fan who committed suicide in 1997. The proceeds of this record went to a San Franscisco suicide prevention hotline. The music itself was created when the band were in a recording studio and were being troubled by the music of one of the other bands recording at the time. To get their own back, they rested every guitar and bass they could find against the speakers which had been turned up to maximum and recorded what happened. A beatbox was added to create some “horrendously distorted pulsations”. On the liner notes Thurston Moore states that in a way this is his favourite Sonic Youth record. I’m not quite there but it would be in my top five.  In the end after the mixing and processing that created the eight tracks of Silver Session, this is half an hour of great drone. Like a Metal Machine Menche if you will. Excellent.

Thurston Moore – Sensitive/Lethal (No Fun Productions) 2008

Posted in Drone, Music, noise, sonic youth, Thurston Moore with tags , on December 6, 2008 by noisenoisenoise


You’d think that considering  my relatively recent explorations of noise, drone avant rock and experimental skull fuckery, I would have, by now,  dabbled in the more out-there output of my favourite band of all time Sonic Youth. But alas until the last two weeks I’ve left their experimental recordings alone. The reason for this may be an earlier expereince I had with SYR1 which didn’t exactly  light up my life at the time.  Whatevey the reason I thought it time to start devling into the vast back catalogue of Sonic Youth related experimental music to see whether in fact I have been missing something.

My first stop is Sensitive/Lethal. Not exactly back catalogue  but it was the only thing I could purchase quickly.  I’ve always found Thurston Moore to be a difficult proposition as an artist  mainly because I struggle to reconcile that the man who same up with the almighty Sister album is also responsible for the flatulent crap on Washing Machine. In fact it is for that reason I had stayed away from his earlier mainstream album Psychic Hearts and his more recent Trees Outside the Academy (if anyone want to give me their honest thoughts about Trees I’d really appreciate it). Trust between he and I is an issue, enough said. But fuck it I’m a huge, huge,huge fan of Carlos Giffoni and his No Fun label and my thinking was that I was on safe ground with Sensitive/Lethal because Giffoni couldn’t possibly release any shit on his label. I’m happy to say that my twisted logic was correct and Moore has in fact released a work of exceptional guitar based drone, intersecting with noise/experimental elements. I’d go a step further and say that it should (if there was in any justice in the world) be on a whole heap of those end of year best of lists that start cropping up about now. There are three tacks on Sensitive Lethal. The two main tracks are oddly enough Sensitive and Lethal. Both over the 20 minute mark. They are split by the extremely short by drone standards Lonesome. It’s difficult to explain the sound that Moore creates but it’s fair to say it’s less noisy than Giffoni and with the  added bonus that I can actually figure out the instruments being played. In fact Lethal has some early guitar elements that reminded me a little of Sunn O))). Full of festive cheer this one.

%d bloggers like this: