Entertainment Weekly

Subscribe

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content

Article

Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star

Posted on

Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star

type:
Music
Current Status:
In Season
Producers:
DGC
genre:
Rock

We gave it a B

After leading many younger acts, including Nirvana, to the major leagues and toying with a user-friendly sound on the group’s own last album, Dirty, Sonic Youth is reconsidering its direction. On Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star (DGC), the New York noise-rockers sound self-conscious about their roles as pioneers, survivors, boosters, and talent scouts of the underground. Several songs dispense warnings and advice to artists moving from postpunk to mainstream-like ”Winner’s Blues,” an anomalous acoustic ballad about the pressures of fame. Other songs valiantly root for underdogs: an abused child in bassist-singer Kim Gordon’s ”Bone,” bashed gays in guitarist-singer Thurston Moore’s ”Androgynous Mind.”

Yet from its insider discourse to its feedback eruptions, the album sounds like an experiment in the static of stasis; the tampered guitars and tortured vocals mostly sputter over skittering beats. The band calls the album art- core, a fair tag-it’s conceptual but not compelling-for songs that never quite emerge from the sketch stage. For acolytes, it may be a welcome break, a chance to put recent career moves into theoretical perspective. For newcomers, though, the album is likely to just be a puzzle. B

Comments