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SYR 4: Goodbye 20th Century

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Sonic Youth 11/16/1999

Review

As a farewell to a century of musical innovation, Sonic Youth devoted a double album to covering legendary avant-garde recordings such as John Cage's Six, James Tenney's Having Never Written a Note for Percussion, and Christian Wolff's Edges. As a further token of gratitude, Sonic Youth had other avant-garde musicians such as William Winant collaborate with them on these covers. The result is a minimal album of silence occasionally interrupted by strange dissonance that quietly reaps noisy havoc on your mind. The many collaborators make Goodbye 20th Century a curious listen -- certainly not your standard Sonic Youth album. Actually, it's not too far removed from the other SYR EPs, especially in terms of production sound. But anyone looking for standard fare here is going to be greatly disappointed. These aren't songs -- they're compositions and they're performed as such. Alt-rock this is not.
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 Edges, for any number of players, free instrumtation [Live Classics][Cover] Sonic Youth 15:59
  3. 2 Six, for 6 percussionists [3rd Take][Live Classics][Cover] Sonic Youth 3:1
  4. 3 Six for New Time [Live Classics][Cover] Sonic Youth 2:6
  5. 4 +- Takehisa Kosugi 6:56
  6. 5 Voice Piece for Soprano Sonic Youth 0:13
  7. 6 Pendulum Music, for 3 or more microphones, amps & loudspeakers [Cover][Live Classics] Sonic Youth 5:50
  8. 1 Koan: Having Never Written a Note for percussion (For John Bergamo)~[Excerpt] Sonic Youth 8:58
  9. 2 Six, for 6 percussionists [Live Classics][Cover][4th Take] Sonic Youth 2:10
  10. 3 Burdocks [Cover][Live Classics] Sonic Youth 13:7
  11. 4 Four6, for any way of producing sounds [Live Classics][Cover] Sonic Youth 29:55
  12. 5 Piano Piece No. 13 (Carpenter's Piece) [Live Classics][Cover][For Nam June Paik] Sonic Youth 3:54
  13. 6 Pièce Enfantine [Cover][Live Classics] Sonic Youth 1:23
  14. 7 Treatise, for any number of musicians with any instruments~[Excerpt] Sonic Youth 3:21

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