Endless Loop: Little Trouble Girl

sonicyouthHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“Little Trouble Girl” by Sonic Youth

I don’t know about you, but I was pretty bummed out back in 2011 when Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon got divorced and dissolved the band. It’s always disheartening when a band you love, and maybe especially one that you grew up with, reaches its inevitable breaking point and ceases to continue on, but the relationship split within made it that much worse. Granted, I’ve never met either of these people*, and their personal lives have absolutely no bearing on my life whatsoever, but it was kind of devastating. They were supposed to be the model. They were supposed to be the ones that made it. And while it wasn’t like having your parents split up or anything, it was on par with maybe a cool older cousin getting divorced or something.

At least we got decades of excellent music.

Every record Sonic Youth recorded definitely has its charms, but the real sweet spot starts with 1988’s Daydream Nation and goes through 1995’s Washing Machine. You would be hard pressed to find another set of five consecutive albums that are as consistent, original, influential, and just plain awesome as the band’s output during those seven years. And one of the highlights from that era is the trippy and surreal Gordon-fronted ballad, “Little Trouble Girl,” a single from Washing Machine.

“Little Trouble Girl” came out at a time in my life when I was starting to broaden my horizons in regard to music and film, and really to all art and media in general. Stuff that only a couple of years prior would have had me turning my nose up to it, or tuning my brain off from it suddenly started making waves and getting rotations. I sought out the different. I would seek out the strange. I adored the weird. And, if we’re honest, “Little Trouble Girl” is weird. I don’t even know how to begin describing it. An off-tuned guitar begins a slow and strange melody, and then a chorus of girls begins to sing (along with Kim fucking Deal!)…kind of creepily…until Kim Gordon begins her almost Nico-esque spoken word verses. And then those girls sing again. The whole effect is otherworldly, and that chorus digs deep and just stays with you for hours…days…or even 20 years.

And now we’ll never get that again.


*In 1998, I missed meeting Thurston Moore at a yard sale in Austin near my apartment by about 10 minutes. He had been crate digging through the guy’s records, which I was there to do myself. I bought a Billy Joel album.


Thomas H Williams

Thomas H Williams

From a bunker somewhere in Central Texas, Thomas H. Williams spends most of his time with his wife, his two sons, and his increasingly neurotic dog. He listens to a lot of music, drinks a lot of excellent beers, and gets out from time to time. For even more shenanigans, visit heavenisanincubator.blogspot.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>