Friday, October 30, 2009

Female Mechanic Now On Duty

The third song on the album A Thousand Leaves is called "Female Mechanic Now On Duty."

A friend once told me that that Sonic Youth was THE "indie rock jam band." Jam band? Never in a million years would I lump Sonic Youth into such a useless category of music but in retrospect, the band does have many JAM BAND qualities, although I don't ever recall them taking a 39 minute classic album and performing live for 4 hours. I would never put them in the same league as Phish or Widespread Panic, and their fans cringe at the same comments. In the end, Sonic Youth has an amazing ability when it comes to jamming, what sets them apart is that they are creative and expect and end result rather than "hey man let's just see where the music takes us." Its all the same without pot.

"Female Mechanic Now On Duty" wsa bore out hours of jamming. Most of the Thousand Leaves record was taken from bits and peices of long improv sessions at their studio Echo Canyon. The band called them "experiments" and released some of the instrumentals as "Perspective Musicales." Its obvious they wanted their fans to see the fruits of their labors even it all it is in 12 minutes of fuzzy studio feedback. Don't knock it until you have tried it.

In a 1998 interview, Kim and Lee both stated that this song was in response to the Meredith Brooks song "Bitch." Lee stated the riff and the movement of the song lended itself to a more radio freindly environment and until it was slowed down to a blues-y pace. I find Kim's lyrics to be far more BITCH than Meredith Brooks. I'm sure in the back of her mind she was thinking "Bitch? I'll show you bitch!" And you wonder why at age 57 I still think she's hot.

I will point out the end outro of "modern women cry, modern women don't cry" is quite clever.

This song, like all the others on this album, was played nightly on the 98/99 tour. It has not been played since.

A very rocking version of the song from 5/19/1998.

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