In the late ’80s, the members of Sonic Youth joined up with Mike Watt to form a joke band called Ciccone Youth (Ciccone, of course, being the given surname of the pop icon known as Madonna). Of course people forming joke bands and one-off experimental projects is nothing new (I’ve been involved in several), but when you’re Sonic Youth and Mike Watt, any sliver of musical output you create is going to be collected and revered by someone, even if it consists mostly of musical in-jokes and ill-advised covers of 80s hits (which, of course, at the time were just known as “hits”) recorded in karaoke booths.
Needless to say, there was some debate as to the merits of this record at KCMU, but in the end the genius of the Youth shone through and won out.
“Madonna eat your heart out!”
“There’s some cool stuff on here, but a lot of it sounds like they were pretty much fucking around in the studio. A couple of covers including their single.”
“I like this + vote for H! Got some calls on my show. Let it rain!”
“Me, Jill, Hendrix, Cosby, rocks + spoken wordish. [Does any of that make sense to anyone?] Play it lots. Well OK not lots, but play it up.”
“Oh c’mon, let’s let the Youth fuck around in the studio, call themselves whatever they want and continue to come up with bakin’ covers of Madonna shlock (we better not tell them this didn’t make H - they’ll be bumming).”