Kim Gordon is undeniably the first lady of Alternative music. She plays bass and sings in the landmark band, Sonic Youth. She encouraged her former record label, Geffen Records to sign Nirvana. She was one of the producers on Hole’s first album Pretty On The Inside. She co-directed The Breeder’s song “Cannonball” with Spike Jonze (one of my favorites), started the first women’s streetwear line X-Girl with her friend Daisy Von Furth. Today, she continues to produce influential music, art, and fashion. Kim Gordon is not only a fashion influence, she basically set the indie rock standard of “whats cool.”
Sonic Youth formed in the eighties in New York City and established themselves in the nineties as an experimental, progressive alternative rock band. Their latest album, The Eternal is a nod towards the artists that have inspired the band. According to The Guardian:
The Eternal is literally a self-portrait of the artists as consumers. With a few exceptions, each song is a byproduct of Sonic Youth’s culture-vulture virtuosity at locating choice morsels of carrion left behind by vintage vanguards and bygone extremists. This has always been an aspect of Sonic Youth, from Death Valley ’69 (inspired by the Manson Family and the moment the 60s trip turned heavy) through the Ciccone Youth side project with its conceptual-karaoke takes on Madonna and Robert Palmer songs offset by the hipster esotericism of Two Cool Rock Chicks Listening to Neu! (this was back when knowing about Neu! wasn’t virtually middlebrow like it is today, as the records were still out of print). I know people for whom Sonic Youth functioned absolutely as a portal band, an entry point for them into an underground wonderworld of dissident noisemaking and neo-beat bohemia stretching across several decades.
“…when we started out, we really just wanted to make clothes that we wanted to wear and a lot of things were, like, modified ideas about a good fitting T-shirt or pair of pants. Things that you’d find in a thrift store that you’d want to alter slightly.”
Sonic Youth is on tour in support of their sixteenth album, The Eternal.
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