Picks and Pans Review: Washing Machine
updated 10/30/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST
•originally published 10/30/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST
Long before bands like Foo Fighters and the Breeders started going gold, Sonic Youth was busy hooking a cult of college kids with their fuzzy, feedback-heavy melodies. But after some dozen albums, the New York City foursome has yet to strike gold—and judging by its loose, unpolished garage sound, their latest release won't alter their track record.
Parenthood has hardly turned singers Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore into softies. (The pair have a 16-month-old daughter named Coco.) They still make a thrilling musical couple: Gordon pummels "Becuz," "Panty Lies" and the title song with her breathless shriek, sounding like some stunned shock therapy patient, while her more mild-mannered husband strums along like a blissed-out Lou Reed strolling down the wild side. Sure, the arch, art-house rock on Washing Machine can be trying—at nearly 20 minutes, "The Diamond Sea" drones aimlessly and begs for a tight edit—but thanks to the potency of their ragged aesthetic, Sonic Youth's latest effort is no washout. (DGC)