Guitar-noise masters and unconventional melody-makers Sonic Youth
have returned once again for your ear-bleeding pleasure. This time,
it's with The Destroyed Room: B-Sides And Rarities, which follows
up 2006' Rather Ripped and offers an insightful look into the
creative process over the years of one of rock n' roll's greatest
bands of the last 20 years. The Destroyed Room catches Sonic
Youth on a Wednesday night, drinking beers and working out ideas.
True to Sonic Youth formula, (or lack of formula), it opens up with
'Fire Engine Dream,' a 10-minute instrumental of panic-filled noise,
and is followed up by 'Fauxhemians,' another long jam, although a
bit more pleasant.
The album is hit and miss, as are most b-side releases. It's not
until after the extremely annoying 'Razor Blade,' in which it seems
Kim Gordon is making stuff up as she records, do we hear anything
of real substance. Call it improv if you will. I called it annoying.
That being said, Kim makes up for it on the next track with the wonderful
'Blink.' "My body moves / It goes without me... I blink, you
die / Cause you believe in what I can't see." 'Campfire' is a
really cool electronic song, which conjures up the sounds of a crackling
fire, insects, birds, and shooting stars. 'Loop Cat' has a very science
fictionary, ambient, down-tempo feel to it. 'Kim's Chords' is another
instrumental jam, but a bit more traditional in the way of Sonic Youth,
with chaotic repetition giving way to changes in beat and feel.
A few more instrumentals further and the album closes with two gems.
'Queen Anne Chair' and the epic 25-minute 'The Diamond Sea' are delightfully
signature sounding Sonic Youth. The former is a noisy guitar pop song
that gets your heart and fist pumping. The latter is an absolutely
beautiful psychedelic walk through the city with the uncut version
from the earlier Washing Machine release. As classical music
has shown us, although the original was 19 minutes, a great song can
be enjoyed continuously and added upon. Classical, no. Classic Sonic
Youth, hell yeah!
1. Fire Engine Dream
3. Razor Blade
6. Loop Cat
7. Kim's Chords
8. Beautiful Plateau
9. Three-Part Sectional Love Seat
10. Queen Anne Chair
11. The Diamond Sea
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