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Spacelab Retrograde: Sonic Youth - Daydream Nation (Full Album)


By: Corey Tate
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April 4, 2013


This is the album that set it all in motion for Sonic Youth. Every album before Daydream Nation was an experiment built on top of an experiment, each one better than the last. If there was a Malcolm Gladwell tipping point for Sonic Youth, Daydream Nation was it; Goo was their point of arrival but Daydream Nation set the stage for all of that to happen.

The album's sound aesthetic was disjointed and spiky post-punk experiments. Sonic Youth was no longer a No-Wave band, Glenn Branca was part of the past, and they steamrolled into a new sound that only makes sense as the transition from albums like Sister and Confusion Is Sex into Goo and Dirty. It's the nexus.

It couldn't have arrived at a better time for the band ... they signed onto Geffen Records after its release, setting the template for the so-called "selling out" movement that followed. Before Daydream Nation, post-punk and emerging "alternative" bands couldn't sell out and keep their integrity. After Sonic Youth jumped onto a major label and actually created an album that was both *listenable* AND "experimental," not selling out their cause but committing the ultimate sin of the time in going big on a major label, the race was on. It was cool to sell out if you were an alternative or punk band. The 1990's followed and we know the rest of that story: oh well, whatever. Never mind.

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Big Data:
Artist: Sonic Youth
Album: Daydream Nation
Recording Label: Enigma Records
Media type: YouTube Stream

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