I saw Sonic Youth this past Saturday at Maxwell’s –this tiny music venue in Hoboken, NJ. The last time I saw Sonic Youth was circa 1993 in Los Angeles. I don’t remember how I started listening to them, but I’m a big fan.
Sonic Youth has been around since the early 80’s. Their music defies a specific genre but most music critics would describe them as ‘art rock’, ‘noise’, or ‘experimental.’ And they are definitely experimental –we’re talking manipulation of guitar feedback, noise effects, creation of soundscapes, and everything in between. They have a way of putting things together and coming out with a great song. Their songs definitely vary. Some are just positively haunting and soothing; others sound very angry and completely rock-n-roll. I would say they are a “love them or hate them” kind of band. To me, of course, they just plain ROCK!
I was surprised that the acoustics sounded so well at Maxwell’s (considering it was the size of a large living room). I think the intimate atmosphere made the show even better. It almost felt like a private show. Sonic Youth came to stage using the same door as everyone else. The crowd parted and gave them way to climb up the stage. Damn. They are so cool. To me, they have not aged a bit even though everyone was a decade older than the last time I saw them (and they are now pushing 45+ years old). Thurston Moore was very personable and kept cracking jokes. Kim Gordon was uber-cool as usual! The rest of the band was just as fantastic. Overall, the show kicked arse! I just wished they played some more of their early 90’s stuff.
Check out these gorgeous photos taken by Subinev. He has inspired me take a more artistic approach when it comes to taking pictures at shows. Aren't they just amazing?
Thurston Moore with Steve Shelley at the drums
Lee Ranaldo and Jim O'Rourke
Kim Gordon kicking arse
Song of the Day:
Stones by Sonic Youth