Washing Machine


In 1995, Sonic Youth were the elders of indie rock. Their friend, Kurt, was gone, and their other friends, Pavement, were swerving around the stardom that had killed Kurt. Sonic Youth were now a well-known band not likely to ever get any bigger. So they kind of punted, or at least moved into territory they knew but had never built houses on. This is largely a songs record, or at least a vocals record, with Kim and Lee up front next to Thurston, and even Kim Deal, who sings lead on “Little Trouble Girl.” And the big guitar epic here, “The Diamond Sea,” is one of their most peaceful, and represents a chunk of where they were about to go. Sort of tossed off and masterful, Washing Machine is a bunch of old friends relaxing into their power.

Sasha Frere-Jones

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