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REVIEW: Chelsea Light Moving - Chelsea Light Moving

REVIEW: Chelsea Light Moving - Chelsea Light Moving

By: Jeff Daily
Follow Jeff Daily on: Twitter
February 26, 2013

Gawd bless the pointed head of post-no wave-art-punk-pre-grunge indie revolutionary Thurston Moore's detuned guitar!! Chelsea Light Moving, the band Moore is currently fronting after the announced hiatus of Sonic Youth, is everything longtime shaggy record collectors would want to hear from a Moore-lead project. To be blunt none of the music/lyrics on the album are the least bit surprising, but HELL when someone like Mr. Moore has a distinctive (and frankly killa-dilla) way with a guitar hand, why fix anything? I'm pre-disposed to like this record and of course I do. Hey friends, if ya like Sonic Youth or Thurston Moore's solo discs, you will like Chelsea Light Moving, no doubt about it.

Album opener "Sleeping Where I Fall" is straight out of the Dirty-era SY. The rest of the songs roll from that template down. OK, to be fair the next tune, "Alighted," evolves from near Metal riffage to classic SY chords to fucking garbage disposal blaster and back. HEAVY. I can hear Moore leading the band with one rule, "ROCK OUT LOUD MOFO's." We continue on down aggro road..."Lip" sounds like A Thousand Leaves with a tad more Aberdeen, WA flannel mixed in for good measure. The final cut is a spoken word piece recalling NYC Ghosts & Flowers! I could keep on comparing each track to a different blend of Sonic Youth albums, but that isn't really necessary. I've made my point...(He even manages to work in Beat writer odes to William S. Burroughs and Frank O'Hara! Moore loves his hipster history!)

The thesis of Thurston seems to be, "dispense with any pretense of pretty noodling." The riffs on the album are volatile and easily some of the grungiest ever laid down by a Moore band. The influence of today's 90s-nostalgia may have crept into Moore's songwriting, or maybe the climate of thousands of DIY noise freaks with Bandcamp pages sending out feedback fried streams inspired him to plug in and jam recklessly. Who the F cares, this is a damn fine record. The best non-Sonic Youth, SY album yet etched into wax, Chelsea Light Moving fits alongside latter-day Youth as another example of why guitars are great instruments.

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