SOUNDTRACK: SONIC YOUTH-Goo (1990).
I’m not sure exactly why this Sonic Youth album was the first one I really got into. I assume it’s because I was working at the radio station and probably got a bit of hype about their switch to DGC records.
And, say what you will about DGC being a major label, DG had some really great taste at the dawn of that label.
Goo and Dirty are sort of lumped into a kind of sellout phase for SY. But Goo is certainly harsher than Daydream Nation, and yet it also seems to flirt with the mainstream (with Chuck D appearing on it, and “Goo” having something resembling a sing-along chorus”).
Yet “Mary-Christ” has a crazy background vocal section. Kool Thing, the one with Chuck D, has a catchy enough chorus but the squealing guitars are very harsh.
Lee’s “Mote” is probably the catchiest song on the disc, although really the middle section has these sort of smooth songs like “Mote” and “Disappearer.” But with “Mildred Pierce,” you get the scariest , most abrasive ending to a song you can imagine (and from what starts as a really pretty instrumental too). And “Scooter and Jinx” is pretty much just a minute full of noise.
While 1991 may have been the year that punk broke, it’s Goo, complete with its Raymond Pettibon cover that sent punk, kicking and screaming, mostly screaming, into the mainstream. All ready for Nirvana to smash the door wide open.
I just looked up Raymond Pettibon and learned that he is Greg Ginn’s brother. Ginn founded Black Flag and of course Pettibon (whose real name is also Ginn) did virtually all the artwork. I would even daresay that it was Black Flag that propelled Pettibon into underground fame… he even outlasted the band that gave him his fame. Wow, thanks Wikipedia.
[READ: July 5, 2009] “A Guide to Summer Sun Protection”
I don’t normally mention the Shouts & Murmurs one-page items from the New Yorker, but since Zev Borow is in pretty much all the McSweeney’s I’ve been reading, I thought I’d bring him up again.
The Shouts & Murmurs are funny pieces; often I find that they should be one or two paragraphs shorter than they wind up being (but given the length of the section, it certainly has length requirements.
This one is about Sunscreen and SPFs and is extrapolated on from an article in the Times about a new SPF of 100. Borow creates a guide for consumers as to the meanings of SPF ratings.
It goes from 4 to 233(!). The first line cracked me up, but it was the explanation of 12 that had me really laughing:
SPF 12—Great for practical jokes, if your idea of funny is making someone think they are protected from the sun’s seriously fucking powerful and harmful rays when they’re actually not. Bonus: Comes with an “I AM, OR ONE DAY WILL BE, A DANGEROUSLY NEGLECTFUL PARENT” visor.
It’s available here.