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Sonic Youth – Rather Ripped

For a while now I’ve felt incomplete, a bit uncomfortable, like I mistakenly left the house without a bra and deodorant. I even pulled out my beloved Chuck Taylors in all their worn glory, a pair of shoes that is still hanging in there after 20+ years of city street living and too many concerts to even remember. I laughed, thinking of a line Cher once used during one of her talk show interviews, that the jeans she was wearing were older than some of the men she dated. You go girl. Yes, there was a bit more spunk in my step, but I still couldn’t scratch that itch.

Then I threw in the new Sonic Youth album, Rather Ripped, and I felt a sense of calm fill the room and my being. Like King Missle’s John S. Hall when he found his detachable penis on a blank next to a toaster oven, I felt complete. The back alley ballads, those reminiscent chords, the off kilter twinge of creativity filled the void in a way that’s only possible via the kindred souls of Sonic Youth.

Straight up from the hot tarmac, Ms. Gordon is killing us softly with her song “Reena,” rumbling with chunky bass lines and hair shaking rhythms that would get many skirt twisting. Her mood in “Turquoise Boy” climbs and slides hypnotically, accented by flecks of sonic sand that fly from the burning tires of a slow motion ride down a 100 mile beach. The “turn it up!” track comes sliding a third of the way into the album with “Sleepin’ Around,” reminding you why you let the Best Buy talk you into that extended stereo warranty.

Sonic Youth started their summer tour where it all began back at CBGB’s June 13 and will make their way west and into Denver on Tuesday, July 27 at the Gothic.


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