Feministing Hearts Sonic Youth

Sonic Youth
Rather Ripped
Geffen Records (2006)
Indie rock legends Sonic Youth burst out of the summer music pack with their latest album, Rather Ripped, to be released June 13 on Geffen Records. Though predictably unpredictable in terms of musical experimentation, the group delivers its characteristic guitar renderings and thoughtful lyricism, appealing to devoted fans and new initiates alike.
The former five-piece has been trimmed to four, as producer and multi-instrumentalist Jim O’Rourke left the band to pursue his film studies. Over the final days of 2005 and into early this year, the band recorded and mixed twelve new songs, each with a touch of sonic splendor and liberation that SY is known for.
Rather Ripped begins with driving tracks “Reena� and “Incinerate� and quickly transitions to curious and midbeat “Do You Believe in Rapture?� The trademark guitar sound is present on “Sleeping Around� and “Turquoise Boy.� Quirky, art-punk verse is found throughout. On “Rats,� a song that speaks of closeness and separation with lyrics such as “You could be my open road/You could be the reason why/You could ease my heavy load/But I’m gonna freeze you out.�
For those familiar with Sonic Youth, the new album doesn’t map much new territory, but for newbies, the only thing you can expect about the noise rock troubadours is their inventiveness. The band’s appearance on the season finale of Gilmore Girls further confirms the group’s status in the mainstream. In sleepy album closer “Or,� co-vocalist Thurston Moore asks, “What comes first, the music or the words?� Thankfully for us, both aspects are present, strong and carry through to the end.
SY+YYYs in an empty Williamsburg pool this August = Y can’t I be a New York girl? Presale tix start in mere hours, so get on with it here.
Peep the song titles and lyrics and stream the album here.

Join the Conversation

  • h

    Sonic Youth!!! I’ve been a fan scince “goo” when i was like 13 years old!
    Swimsuit issue off of “dirty” is tres feminist! Good to know they are still around!!

  • TheTruth

    Eh…I’m a huge SY fan…and in my opinion the albums have been getting worse and worse. I LOVED NYC Ghosts + Flowers, and I LOVED Murray Street (of course many of the Murray Street songs were written during the NYC G+F tour). Sonic Nurse and the horrendous Rather Ripped (the latter of which features the most poorly designed/cheesiest album cover I’ve ever seen)…ehhhh not so much.
    Hopefully, the next album will be a crusher (just like Goo and EJsTaNS were “meh” albums, and then they came out with WASHING MACHINE!) I will NOT be seeing them on this tour, unless they drop most of Rather Ripped from the setlist.
    There are a couple of good tracks (Reena, Rapture, Rats and Turquoise Boy), but the shitty tracks (THE NEUTRAL!!! ugh., What A Waste (with the brilliant lyrics “What a waste-Youre so chaste-I can’t wait-To Taste Your face” BARF), Sleepin Around, etc) Far outnumber the quality goodness.
    I give the album a 3/10.

  • C-poc

    YEAH! Music on Feministing! I’m so sick of reading reviews on Pitchfork.com, which is a great site, don’t get me wrong. BUT they have around 3 female writers and the site practically smells like an indie rocker boy. I’m excited for more reviews! Thanks!

  • http://www.davidson.edu Ashish George

    I am going to see Sonic Youth in a couple of weeks and I really hope they stick to the old stuff. But I am glad they’re still putting out music.
    Speaking of legendary indie bands, Mission of Burma has a new album out (The Obliterati) that’s gotten very good reviews.

  • Aaron Richter

    Angie stinks. JK!

  • Jamie Zoellner

    Its about time someone kicked the cock out of rock. This Wednesday review session is certainly a refreshing addition. Kudos. You are so on the ball compared to this recent grad.

  • GamesOnline

    I give the album a 5/10.free games

  • GamesOnline

    I give the album a 5/10.free games

  • GamesOnline

    I give the album a 5/10.free games