After two years of dealing with a new set of equipment, and touring behind the NYC Ghosts and Flowers album, it looked like the band would take a small break and possibly do some other projects.
Not the case. During the development of the NYC Ghost and Flowers material, the band had to re-learn how to make noise, and they did this by pulling out many older tunes from 2000 to 2001 tours. "Kool Thing" was resurrected after a long absence.
The natural thing for any band to do during and after a transitional period is to keep up the momentum, and thats exactly what the band did coming into the year 2002.
"Empty Page" was the first song written and recorded for Murray Street. Thurston says that he intended to make a solo album with a bunch of new songs he wrote on his brothers "strange G tuned" guitar. He felt the songs were too pop and too structured and felt a solo record would be better. But after the band heard the demos and a few rehearsals, it was obvious that these new tunes would work great for a new Sonic Youth record.
"Empty Page" has an opening, a verse, chorus, bridge, solo, and coda. It is one of my favorite openings to a Sonic Youth album.
"These are the words but not the truth." Byron Coley claims that this song has to do with Thurston wondering "what if" about the band, and on a visit to Boston he kept wondering what his life would have been like without Sonic Youth. Seems interesting because at this time, Thurston was 43, and opening for Pearl Jam in 2000 probably got him thinking about fame and what it really is and what it does. This is deep, even for Thurston, but I consider Byron Coley to be a reliable source.
This was debuted in 2002 along with the other 6 songs from Murray Street in September 2001. it was played nightly from 2002 to 2003 and has made many appearances since that time. I hope they pull this one out again soon.