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Old 02.15.2007, 12:32 PM   #1
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ANATOMY OF A SONIC YOUTH

What to expect when Kim & Thurston take the stage


By Joe Pompeo

If you’ve been to a few Sonic Youth shows, you pretty much know what to expect in terms of who’ll be in the audience. But if you’re a newcomer to those noisy concerts during which Thurston spazzes out, Kim gets told repeatedly how sexy she is, Lee stands there looking cool as hell and Steve just kind of sits and plays the drums, you might want to consult the following guide to determine which fans you should hang with while rocking out to “Kool Thing.”


Balding Middle-Age Dad Who Still Wears Converse All Stars
Aside from Sonic Youth themselves, Balding Converse Dad is probably the most cred person at the show (he saw Sonic Youth on the E.V.O.L. tour in ’86), but also one of the dorkiest. He came by himself because his wife is “over it” and his kids are still too young to be at a concert where people pass joints around. He got to the venue early enough to secure a spot that’s ideal for taking pictures, but in which he will regret having to stand when people start pogo-moshing to “100 %.” Despite his age, Balding Converse Dad manages to look pretty fucking hip in that black Calvin Klein button-down (sleeves rolled up) tucked into light-blue Levis.


Circa ’94 College Radio DJ
Circa ’94 College Radio DJ dons the same Dinosaur Jr. ringer tee he wore to that show on the Washing Machine tour back in ’95, except this time around his beer belly is sticking out. Now in his early- to mid-thirties, he talks a lot about how he’s seen Sonic Youth so many times he doesn’t even care anymore. But for some reason he still ends up at every show, his justification being that he “got the tickets for free through the station.” C94CRDJ was one of the first people to receive a promo copy of Rather Ripped, even though he was relegated from Friday afternoons to the Sunday 2 a.m. slot to make room for those two cute sophomore chicks, whose new show, “Dirty Boots,” has been making waves on the university indie circuit.


The Requisite Alternateen
Alternateens may not be as ubiquitous as they were in the ’90s, but they remain a key element at any Sonic Youth show. Salvation Army T-shirts, baggy-esque jeans with chain wallet and shaggy hair—but not in that hipster way (see also “Manic Panic”)—comprise the wardrobe of the Requisite Alternateen, who is the person most genuinely excited to be there, especially considering Mom OK-ed the concert on a school night. He/she is also probably the least pretentious audience member, as well as the one most likely to be chosen by the band to appear in a future album sleeve. This kid practically invented the song “Bull in the Heather.”


Noise Fans
These people enjoy Sonic Youth less than they enjoy Black Dice. Their favorite Sonic Youth recordings are the instrumental SYR EPs, and they’re not big on the albums Goo or Dirty. Most people come to a Sonic Youth show hoping to hear “Teen Age Riot,” but Noise Fans are there primarily for Thurston-and-Lee’s 20-minute feedback freakouts, without which they would feel as if they might as well be seeing Coldplay.


Ex-Zine Stars/Internet Celebrities
These “kids” are somewhere in their twenties and are pretty much the hippest people at the show. Discovering Sonic Youth when they were high school freshmen made them stop playing sports and start smoking cigarettes. They used to be punk, but dress pretty normal these days and therefore don’t really stand out. But what they lack in conspicuousness they make up for in scene points. Everyone remembers the zines they used to write back in ’97 as well as their first AOL screen names. They were among the first 100 people to create profiles on Make Out Club and they even baby-sat for Kim-and-Thurston’s daughter Coco while attending college in Massachusetts. Their inherent coolness and youthful drinking abilities make Balding Converse Dad secretly feel like a piece of shit.


The Poseur
Transferred to NYU. Discovered MisShapes. Bought Sonic Youth tickets. End of story.


Feb. 16, Webster Hall, 125 E. 11th St. (betw. 3rd & 4th Aves.), 212-353-1600; SOLD OUT.
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Old 02.15.2007, 12:58 PM   #2
the ikara cult
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that was quite fun. American though, i wonder what the concurrent UK version would be like
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Old 02.15.2007, 03:58 PM   #3
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This has nothing to do with demographics, and it is definitely well-worn knowledge among most board members, but at any given show, you can also certainly guarantee that Kim will be front and center, Lee with be on your left, and Thurston will be set up to your right.

This might be helpful when purchasing tickets or while helping yourself to general seating or standing before the show.
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Old 02.15.2007, 04:31 PM   #4
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Balding Middle-Age Dad Who Still Wears Converse All Stars


hmmm, its closer than i think!
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Old 02.15.2007, 04:32 PM   #5
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He came by himself because his wife is “over it” and his kids are still too young to be at a concert where people pass joints around.


ha ha , oh god !!!!
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Old 02.15.2007, 07:50 PM   #6
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I was already in my mid 20s when SY came out, but I'm NOT balding, still wear sneaks ( just not Chucks lately), have no kids yet, definately secured a GREAT place to take pics, didn't have to deal with a Mosh pit...the crowd was remarkably controlled, and wore a cotton T NOT tucked into my Levi's blue jeans.

Hehehehehe....I love to rock !

 
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Old 02.15.2007, 10:41 PM   #7
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wow, those were pretty dead-on!!
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Old 02.15.2007, 10:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by against_the_grain
I was already in my mid 20s when SY came out, but I'm NOT balding, still wear sneaks ( just not Chucks lately), have no kids yet, definately secured a GREAT place to take pics, didn't have to deal with a Mosh pit...the crowd was remarkably controlled, and wore a cotton T NOT tucked into my Levi's blue jeans.
Sounds exactly like the dude I saw! Black Husker Du t... jeans, balding, more than definately wearing sneakers. Than again, I'm almost sure this was actually at the Metric concert... (same venue as the SY show, + I was in the same area)
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Old 02.15.2007, 11:34 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k-krack
Sounds exactly like the dude I saw! Black Husker Du t... jeans, balding, more than definately wearing sneakers. Than again, I'm almost sure this was actually at the Metric concert... (same venue as the SY show, + I was in the same area)

NOT balding !!!



Head full of hair !
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Old 02.16.2007, 02:24 AM   #10
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Haha! That was a good read.
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Old 02.16.2007, 02:53 AM   #11
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val-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's assesval-holla-ing kicks all y'all's asses
that was pretty funny.
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Old 02.16.2007, 07:54 AM   #12
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_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses_slavo_ kicks all y'all's asses
I don't know where I'd happen to fit...."Internet celebrities" maybe???
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Old 02.16.2007, 08:20 AM   #13
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I think most of us twentysomethings would be in the internet celebrities category, if only for the lack of age to qualify into another section.
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Old 02.16.2007, 08:29 AM   #14
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jon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's assesjon boy kicks all y'all's asses
haha exellent stuff.
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Old 02.16.2007, 08:32 AM   #15
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It's obviously a very tongue-in-cheek article.I wouldn't fit in any of those categories but then i'm unique and all that.
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Old 02.16.2007, 09:56 AM   #16
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"tougue-in-cheek" means good or bad?
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Old 02.16.2007, 10:12 AM   #17
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love it.

hah, i'm the alterna-teen. (i jest.)
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Old 02.16.2007, 10:56 AM   #18
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I am the 33 yr old, balding, doc marten wearing profusely rocking mo fio
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Old 02.16.2007, 11:19 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the ikara cult
i wonder what the concurrent UK version would be like

When i saw SY in 2004 it seemed just to be

>Indie Poser
>Indie Posers girlfriend who spends the entire time saying loudly "this is just noise can we go now"
>Chav's yes i know chavs, but i did see a few
> Real fans who look physically sick with anticipation
> and of couse Middle Age Balding Dad usually drinking a pint and sporting a nose or ear ring.
>Bleeding Ponytail/Hippy Couple more often seen at Dinosaur Jr shows, longs for pre 2000 days.
> Kim/Thurston lookalikes, sometimes in couples. Think they are the shit.
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Old 02.16.2007, 11:19 AM   #20
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touch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's assestouch me i'm sick kicks all y'all's asses
hah i have no idea where i would place myself. but i have definetely seen all of those categories at an sy show
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