Rounding out their third decade as a band, with sixteen full-length records under their belt, Sonic Youth once again find themselves back on an independent label, Matador Records, after nearly two decades under the wing of  Geffen/Universal.  This is only worth mentioning as trivia as Sonic Youth is not band known for pandering to its audience, nor its label (yeah, I’m looking at you NYC Flowers And Ghosts / A Thousand Leaves).  Even their dipping a big toe into the commercially viable ‘alternative rock’ waters of the early ’90s felt as if it were done solely on their own terms.

The Eternal is quintessentially a Sonic Youth record, in that those who have followed the band’s 28 year musical trajectory should, by now, know what to expect. This not the sound of a band yet again reinventing themselves. While surely not a throwback record, The Eternal does employ tactics reminiscent of the short bursts of Evol and Sister, and Thurston and Kim’s “Anti-Orgasm” would feel right at home on 1994’s Experimental Jet Set, Trash And No Star.  Bar a couple of speedbumps, this is a group that has managed to not only carve out their own sound/niche, but maintain it as well.  While career longevity is not a prize in and of itself, not delving into diluted self-caricature is.  Sonic Youth’s last four albums are proof positive of this, hence The Eternal.

MP3: Sonic Youth :: Sacred Trickster
Amazon: Sonic Youth – The Eternal

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5 Responses to “Sonic Youth :: The Eternal”

  1. I’m really loving this record.
    I was a fan of Rather Ripped and while I think this record is somewhat in the same vein, it really takes it to another level for me.

  2. it’s comforting to know that they’re still doing it and still doing it well. thanks for the tune!

  3. Listenin to it now!

  4. […] “and now for something completely different.”  With the release of Sonic Youth’s The Eternal earlier this summer I’ve been working in tracks from Evol and Sister on ye olde aquarium […]

  5. […] Following the consecutive, uneven, releases A Thousand Leaves and NYC Ghosts & Flowers, the last thing I was expecting from SY in 2002 was an album milestone.  I was not alone in this assumption, and I was wrong — we were wrong.  Murray Street, as it turned out, sparked a second wave career high; one the band is still riding in 2009 with The Eternal. […]

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