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4.5 out of 5 stars 40 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Oct. 19 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal Music Group
  • ASIN: B000003TAJ
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 40 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #57,176 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Schizophrenia
2. Catholic Block
3. Beauty Lies In The Eye
4. Stereo Sanctity
5. Pipeline/Kill Time
6. Tuff Gnarl
7. Pacific Coast Highway
8. Hot Wire My Heart
9. Cotton Crown
10. White Cross
11. Master-Dik

Product Description

Product Description

US LP pressing on 180-gram vinyl. 'EVOL' was a major leap forward for Sonic Youth, but 'Sister' is a masterpiece, demonstrating the group's rapidly evolving musicality. More than ever before, Sonic Youth's songs sound like actual songs, and their collages of noise, distortion, and alternate tunings are now used to provide texture and depth to the music, which is original, complex, and rewarding. Not only is there the full-throttle roar of 'Tuff Gnarl,' but there are shimmering layers of ambient harmonics and dissonance that are as haunting and challenging as any of their barrages of feedback. Furthermore, 'Sister' has a warm sound, which lures the listeners into music that's defiantly arty but never indulgent.

Having successfully balanced atonal freak-outs with rock song structure on their previous release, EVOL, Sonic Youth went further towards convention with this concise, "all rock" (their words) album. Recorded on old tube equipment instead of then-emerging digital technology, the album's 10 songs have an impressively warm, cozy vibe even as they tear up the pavement underneath. "(I Got a) Catholic Block," "Pacific Coast Highway," and a vicious cover of Crime's "Hot Wire My Heart" are propelled by the newfound power of drummer Steve Shelley, who doesn't let the band's arty self-consciousness inhibit the songs' natural drive. --Rob O'Connor

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This album is probably the opus of the rockier side of sonic youth (besides daydream nation) in this album you get waves upon waves of warm feedback and guitar drones, from the JAMC-esque Beauty Lies in the Eye to the noise freakout jam of Tuff Gnarl. Each song is ultimately of enormous quality, and has been proven so live, with the songs exploding even better than they do on the album. Most of the songs are rockers, with the exceptions of Beauty Lies, and Kotton Krown. The warm tube production gives an excellent sound to the guitars, and hold influence on the drums, which also sound rather unique. The production alone attracts people to this album. Not a single weak song. Downer? The album isnt long enough. My favorites: Catholic Block, Stereo Sanctity, Pipeline/Kill Time, Kotton Krown. Master-Dik was a good edition to this album, but still pick up a copy of the Master-Dik EP.
Not quite the best review in the world, but thats because Im trying to listen to the album and not focusing on the review.
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Format: Audio CD
(DISCLAIMER: The opinion expressed in this review is based on a time I had ridiculous amounts of THC in my bloodstream. My recollection may be a bit clouded to say the least. My opinions on music have changed quite a bit since THC was flushed out of my system.)
Sonic Youth easily surpassed their influences such as the Velvet Underground and the Stooges 15 years ago making everything before obsolete. Their imitators, such as Pavement, My Bloody Valentine, and the Pixies, never even came close to matching Sonic Youth's sound also making them obsolete. The only post-punk / indie rock records you'll ever need is "Sister" and "Daydream Nation". Even Sonic Youth were never able to match those albums.
As opposed to Pavement and the Pixies, Sonic Youth brought energy in to their brand of art noise. "Sister" was pop punk made with noise. They exerted energy on songs like "Catholic Block", "Pipeline/ Kill Time," and "Hotwire My Heart". They also do an excellent job building intensity with they guitars even though the end result is anti-climatic on songs like "Stereo Sanctity" and "Schizophrenia".
Some of the songs are fairly energy draining and poorly placed on the album, but they're not nearly as energy draining and unenthusiastic as their imitators. "Beauty Lies in the Eye" and "Kotton Krown" get into a hippy type trance, but the noises they use sound much better than any hippie noise.
Sonic Youth have an ironic sound. The music is actually very soft and comforting, but the noises they use to create it are pretty harsh. They're without question a very unique and influential band.
People who're first getting into punk are usually interested in the SST label because Greg Ginn, guitarist for the legendary hardcore band Black Flag, founded it.
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Format: Audio CD
This album is the second installment in Sonic Youth's 'trilogy' and manages to be even stronger than Evol.
The album starts off with the great Schizophrenia, which is definately one of the best opening songs on any album. The song is incredibly catchy and never loses its vibe or energy.
The one-two punch of this album is really something, as Catholic Block starts off. This is easily one's of SY's most melodic and catchy songs of their year.
Beauty Lies In The Eye is one of Kim Gordon's better songs, and is really quite a depressing song. She delivers the lyrics well in whispers.
Stereo Sanctity is a truly great song, simply for it's melody and amazing bass lines, they just work perfectly with all the noise going around it. This is easily one of my favorite
demonstrations of catchy bass guitar in a song.
Tuff Gnarl is a perfect example of SY's obvious tendencies to fool with the listener. THe song starts off kind of poppy and light but then just breaks out into one huge noise jam-fest. Both halves of the song are equally excellent.
Pacific Coast Highway is a collaboration with vocals between Gordon and Moore and is really a nice addition, this is something that was devoid in Evol. PCH resembles Tuff Gnarl in the soft to jam-fest category except its not as radical.
Next up is Sonic Youth's cover of Hotwire My Heart which manages to be as good as the original, although radically different.
Kotton Krown is just catchy, to put bluntly.
Master Dik is almost Sonic Youth's only rap-rock song. It's also one big jam. It's pretty good, but I don't think it manages to stand up against with some of the other songs.
Sonic Youth again manage to create another classic album, that is near flawless. I'd say this is a bit more easier to get into than Evol but I'd recommend something like Goo to the new listener..
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Format: Audio CD
This is my favorite Sonic Youth album. Which is saying quite a lot, since SY are one of all-time favorite bands. When a work has this sort of exalted status with me, it always makes it difficult for me to find the words when writing a review(see my stammering review of "Rain Dogs"). What immediately comes to mind when I think of "Sister" is Arte Povera: art made out of humble materials that simultaneously transcend their everyday origins and bring Art into the realm of the ordinary. Sonic Youth took something quite common, the cheaply recorded underground rock album, and created something extraordinary. Each bent note and obscure lyric seems to conceal something beyond sound and words, and as these songs crescendo into clouds of noise and settle into placid fields of chiming guitar, bliss and paranoia coalesce in a place where the blinding sun and the grimy sidewalk are equally crucial elements of the confusion called life. This is where SY learned to levitate with sincerity, while convincing those for whom "sincerity" is an embarrasment that outer space and inner space bleed over into one another on the same gnostic plane.
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