Posted in music | pictures | tour dates on November 23, 2009

words & photos by Andrew Frisicano

Sonic Youth

Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr. played Terminal 5 on Saturday, November 21st. Opening up for those established acts were synth-heads Cold Cave (who are Sonic Youth's label-mates on Matador Records).

Dinosaur Jr. went on promptly at 8:40pm and played a set that paired old and new with equal intensity. Farm single "Over It" stood strong along earlier tracks, like the enthusiastically offered You're Living All Over Me classics. Wedged toward the front half of the stage, their towering Marshall stacks were a nice stylistic if not totally practical touch to toughen up their softie-rock anthems. The band closed with good tidings - Lou announced that their next NYC appearances would be at Bowery Ballroom on January 16th and Music Hall of Williamsburg January 17th.

Sonic Youth played in front of artistic backdrops that lit gunpowder trails in brilliant colors. The songs came almost entirely from The Eternal, with brief Daydream Nation, Sister and EVOL interruptions. The new record has a kind of thorough consistency without any outright duds or sure singles, and live it was a similar experience. The total dissection of The Eternal wasn't totally unexpected, but it was a little uneventful (my soft spot for Rather Ripped was left untickled). When "Cross The Breeze" came as the first encore's second song, the crowd applauded in recognition for its intro that slow-built into a rapid climax.

Besides the front row, which seemed packed with younger fans ("I am SO HAPPY" one screamed several times when the band took the stage), those on the outskirts of the totally packed Terminal 5 carried an expression of casual interest. But not for a lack of trying from the band. The theatrics were there - when Daydream's "Silver Rocket" came on, Thurston flew unchained to the floor while beating and prodding his guitar - as were the shout-outs. Thurston gave it up to NYC a few times in the night. He sent the crowd off with the line "See you on the streets."

You can see Sonic Youth at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Tuesday, November 24th (with Talk Normal) or Wed, Nov. 25th (with Jemina Pearl).

More pictures and the SY setlist are below....

Dinosaur Jr.

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Sonic Youth Nov. 21 2009 at Terminal 5 setlist
No Way
Sacred Trickster
Calming The Snake
Stereo Sanctity
Anti-Orgasm
Walkin Blue
Shadow Of A Doubt
Antenna
Malibu Gas Station
Leaky Lifeboat (for Gregory Corso)
Poison Arrow
Silver Rocket
Massage The History

The Sprawl
'Cross The Breeze

What We Know
White Cross

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Dinosaur Jr - 2009/2010 Tour Dates
Dec 3 - The Hippo - J Mascis & The Fog Plymouth
Dec 5 - ATP Nightmare Before Christmas - J Mascis & The Fog and Witch Somerset
Dec 7 - Moho Live - J Mascis & The Fog Manchester
Dec 9 - The Garage - J Mascis & The Fog London
Dec 10 - Leicester University - J Mascis & The Fog Leicester
Dec 11 - 10 years of ATP - J Mascis & The Fog Somerset
Jan 16 - Bowery Ballroom in NYC
Jan 17 - Music Hall of Williamsburg in NYC
Jan 19 - Castaways Ithaca, New York
Jan 20 - The Ale House Kingston, Ontario
Jan 21 - Phoenix Concert Theatre Toronto
Jan 22 - Capital Music Hall Ottawa
Jan 23 - Club Soda Montreal, Quebec
Feb 10 - Sala Heineken Madrid
Feb 11 - Sala Apolo Barcelona
Feb 12 - Sala Assig Palma (Mallorca)
Mar 4 - Corner Hotel Melbourne
Mar 6 - Golden Plains Festival Meredith, Victoria
Mar 7 - Lost Weekend Festival Brisbane
Mar 10 - Great Northern Hotel Byron Bay
Mar 11 - Metro Theatre Sydney
Mar 12 - Rosemount Hotel Perth
Mar 13 - Fowlers Live Adelaide
Mar 14 - Moorilla Hobart, Tasmania

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Comments (49)

"those on the outskirts of the totally packed Terminal 5 carried an expression of casual interest..."

Yeah, I'm 5 ft 9in, ofcourse I'm going to have a 'casual interest' when I can't see shit. Worst venue in NYC. Desolate fucking cave.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 11:42 AM

Aside from the facts that Terminal 5 is the worse venue in NYC and the singer from Cold Cave needs singing lessons, it was a great show.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 11:51 AM

Phew! I thought DC crowds were the only ones who stood there like statues with their arms crossed.

Posted by ihatehipsterscum | November 23, 2009 11:56 AM

didn't dinosaur jr. say they were going to play two nights in williamsburg?

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 12:07 PM

I think they said one night at bowery one at MHOW

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 12:20 PM

"Wedged toward the front half of the stage, their towering Marshall stacks were a nice stylistic if not totally practical touch to toughen up their softie-rock anthems."


does the idiot who wrote this know anything about Dinosaur? Has he ever seen them before? "Softie-rock anthems"??!! WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT!?!?!

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 12:23 PM

I wonder if Thurston knocked up Jemina Pearl yet?

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 12:30 PM

Hands down the worst show I've seen in 2009. Boring, boring, boring set lists by both Dinosaur and SY. I left after Antenna.....

Posted by wingwalker77 | November 23, 2009 12:32 PM

wingwalker77 - Couldn't agree more. left at the Sprawl, still, you didn't miss a thing. SY were dull as hell.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 12:42 PM

SY will NEVER recapture what they had going on all those years ago. Instead they write the same bullshit catchy songs with the one-note riff that goes into a noise meltdown in the middle and then Kim G. wriggles and twirls her old bones around like she's 10 years old and Thurston slides his guitar up and down over his amp and the show's over.

KILL YR IDOLS
AND SAVE YR $$, PEOPLE-

I thought they couldn't get more washed up after "Rather Ripped (off)", but they've managed to do it again with an incredibly underwhelming album and lackluster shows.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 12:57 PM

I love how J Mascis is standing in an alcove of Marshall stacks.

Posted by Regular reader | November 23, 2009 12:59 PM

Dino setlist anyone?

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 1:09 PM

videos from the SY set here:

http://www.youtube.com/maestro416

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 1:14 PM

cold cave were terrible.

Posted by duffy | November 23, 2009 1:25 PM

I love Sonic Youth but their recent albums haven't thrilled me and I'm not surprised the setlist was mostly the new album 'cause that's what they've been doing lately.

Posted by iamtheangel.com | November 23, 2009 1:38 PM

I thought it was cool to hear Stereo Sanctity and Shadow of a Doubt, at least.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 1:56 PM

The crowd was terrible, though I've got to tip my hat to security. It's pretty standard to see some serious mall cop over-agression from those guys, but they some how managed to aim it almost exclusively (on the left side of the stage, anyway), towards people that actually deserved it.

One dickhead was forcing his way through the crowd, shoving people to get near the front, and a security guy literally grabbed him by the hand, and walked him ALL THE WAY to the back, and made him start over nicely, if he wanted to stay. I wish their powertrips were always so precisely aimed.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 2:10 PM

i am over this shit. isn't this like seeing the dead in 1995?

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 2:21 PM

Best band ever.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 3:04 PM

worst venue in NYC. awful. even at 5foot 9in. you cannot see anything at this crappy venue.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 3:09 PM

Good God, is Mascis deaf yet?

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 3:23 PM

Mascis is indie rock Beethoven!

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 3:30 PM

J Mascis looks like a grandmother.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 3:57 PM

J. Mascis is Gawd!

Posted by nazz nomad | November 23, 2009 3:59 PM

"nice stylistic if not totally practical touch to toughen up their softie-rock anthems."

Softie-rock anthems? What the hell? I agree with the poster above, it's time to kick this writer in the shins next time we see im.


Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 4:05 PM

white cross would have been sick

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 4:10 PM

Thsis was the best Sonic Youth show ! I've seen them every tour since 1992! They killed it!!

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 4:26 PM

BEST BAND EVER. BEST SHOW EVER!!!

Posted by WINGWALKER77 | November 23, 2009 4:27 PM

I have to say I was a bit disappointed by both setlists. I'd give Dino Jr. a 5/10 and Sonic Youth a 4/10 on the night.

Posted by nupike | November 23, 2009 5:10 PM

j mascis wears ear plugs.

and sonic youth have always sucked live. whether it's 1989 or 2009, they give the audience nothing. having said that, many of their albums are great.

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 5:26 PM

I MISSED SHADOW OF A DOUBT!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!???!?!?!?!?!!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!!!?!????!?!?!???????!?!????!!!!!????!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!!!?!????!?!?!???????!?!????!!!!!????!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!!!?!????!?!?!???????!?!????!!!!!????!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!???!!!!!!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!!!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!!????!?!?!???????!?!????!!!!!????!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!!!?!????!?!?!???????!?!????!!!!!????!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?????!?!?!???????!?!????!!!!!????!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!!!?!????!?!?!???????!?!????!!!!!????!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

Posted by Ray | November 23, 2009 7:58 PM

Sonic Youth?! Sucked live?! You might want to call the manufacturer because I don't think you were born with eyes or ears! They are easily one of the best live bands ever and I'm going to say it, they're better then fuckin' radiohead. there! I said it!

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 8:01 PM

dudes, you are all spoiled... i guess some of us just choose to enjoy our lives.

Posted by tedward75 | November 23, 2009 8:06 PM

I made sure I arrived very early so that I could stand in the front row. I had an incredible experience. I've seen Sonic Youth play multiple times and this was one of the best, second only to last year's River to River. The people who are complaining about SY's setlist need to get over themselves. This was the last leg of their Eternal tour so yeah, of course they are mostly going to play the Eternal. That being said, SY added a number of surprises - White Kross? Shadow of a Doubt? Stereo Sanctity? Seriously! What else can you demand?

Posted by Anonymous | November 23, 2009 9:33 PM

with such a rich back catalog of albums they should just play a song or two from each period of their career going all the way back to evol and sister. why they focused their whole show on their new album is beyond me. everytime they played an older song the crowd erupted-same with dinosaur jr. but at least their newer stuff is more in line with their older music. still great seeing them live though-they still have a ridiculous amount of energy pouring through on stage...

Posted by matador_22 | November 23, 2009 9:38 PM

Anyone have the Dinosaur Jr setlist? I can't find it anywhere

Posted by Anonymous | November 24, 2009 2:35 AM

I bet what seems boring at Term 5 turns to rock & roll when it gets to MHOW. No offense Terminal 5, but it's not an operating rock venue yet. no doubt it would make a very nice club night for someone, but not live music.

can't wait for Tues night, it should be rocking, hoping for mostly new songs, with a bit of "White Cross" or "Stereo Santicity" or "Shadow of a Doubt." Would love to hear the Lee songs from Sister or Daydream or Thousand Leaves--I been in the mood for Lee songs.

Posted by Anonymous | November 24, 2009 3:37 AM

I made sure I arrived very early so that I could stand in the front row. I had an incredible experience. I've seen Sonic Youth play multiple times and this was one of the best, second only to last year's River to River. The people who are complaining about SY's setlist need to get over themselves. This was the last leg of their Eternal tour so yeah, of course they are mostly going to play the Eternal. That being said, SY added a number of surprises - White Kross? Shadow of a Doubt? Stereo Sanctity? Seriously! What else can you demand?

Posted by Anonymous | November 24, 2009 10:39 AM

I got in late to the concert around 9 but I wrote down that Dinosaur Jr. played these songs. I'm definitely missing some:

Get Me
Pieces
I Feel the Pain
Over It
Freak Scene
Little Furry Things

Posted by Anonymous | November 24, 2009 1:14 PM

First two songs were Thumb and In a Jar.

Posted by Anonymous | November 24, 2009 1:47 PM

glad i didn't go

Posted by Anonymous | November 24, 2009 2:09 PM

This show was pretty good, but thought it was a little slow and dare I say it boring. Still enjoyed some moments too!

Posted by Neil Maunder | November 24, 2009 7:35 PM

Is SY the most ooverly exposed band on the planet or if not who is? Make some room for some other deserving bands already. Every New York festival they seem to horn in on as headliners, endless shows man I don't know where they find all these semi disgruntled fans who keep showing up for the same dish. I mean most groups who actually make it outta NY which is pretty rare kinda go do the international thing and yearly big ass show at MSg, enstead these guys and gal continue to suck the energy outta of ny like a black hole. And cue me but, i thought Matador folded. And please for the record would all you has beens stop already with the Playing this record and that record, Pixies included. It seems to go against everything that fueled the movement to begin with. No wonder New York has been lost in the commercial malaise. No ones gonna kill yr rockstars but suicide may be an option. move over.

Posted by Hank rocks | November 24, 2009 7:47 PM

Dino Jr also definitely played Plans, so I guess for a setlist I have:

Thumb
In a Jar
Plans
Get Me
Pieces
I Feel the Pain
Over It
Freak Scene
Little Furry Things

Can anyone think of anything else? Or have an opinion on the order?

Posted by Anonymous | November 25, 2009 12:19 AM

Sonic Youth was AWESOME. That they can still be THIS good this late in their career is amazing, and very unique. I really enjoyed the new stuff and thought it jelled well with the old stuff they did play. I can see why they're doing so much new stuff, to keep things interesting (for us and them). A bunch of songs from all over their career would have been interesting as long as they didn't stick to the same "greatest hits" every night. Still hoping like crazy for Death Valley tomorrow!

Posted by Joe | November 25, 2009 12:26 AM

Catholic Block! Tom Violence! Schizophrenia! Hey Joni!

and oh yeah

CATHOLIC BLOCK!

if Sat was anywhere as great as tonight, sorry I missed it.

Posted by Anonymous | November 25, 2009 12:53 AM

anon 12:19....

dino also played 'imagination blind'.... plus they closed with that really fast, long song that i've seen them play before, and that i think is from the first album....

i would've loved to have heard 'forget the swan', but fuck it.... it was a killer show, they were in top form if you ask me.

Posted by Anonymous | November 25, 2009 12:59 AM

They may be played but they're still gettin paid

Posted by Anonymous | November 25, 2009 2:13 AM

All these haters. The Utes were fantastic on Saturday night. Sure, they may not be the hippest band around but they are still relevant. But why even buy a ticket to see them if you suspect they are played, boring, tired or any combination of the three? Why subject yourself to that? And then complain about it? Self-haters is more like it. Perhaps your time and taste may be better spent finding the next great band at some other venue. Oh and if you did actually buy that ticket, you are helping them to continue doing what they do. So that's something. Hilarious...

Posted by Anonymous | November 25, 2009 2:42 AM

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