“Infidelity breaking up indie rock’s royal couple”: Kim Gordon on Thurston Moore


“Kim Gordon, founding member of Sonic Youth, fashion icon, and role model for a generation of women, now tells her story—a memoir of life as an artist, of music, marriage, motherhood, independence, and as one of the first women of rock and roll, written with the lyricism and haunting beauty of Patti Smith’s Just Kids.” —Amazon.com product description

By Barbi Martinez, Blurt Intern

That blurb above is so bland as to be laughable, but let’s face it: if Amazon were ballsy enough to, I don’t know, offer “Kim Gordon tells her story about Thurston Moore fucking a sycophantic slut and how she discovered the affair and how one of the most awesome indie bands ever imploded in the most sorry-ass way imaginable,” they might get some complaints about the forthcoming (Feb. 24, via Dey Street Books) Girl In A Band. Luckily the writers over at Stereogum have no such fears, and today essayist Douglas Bleggi posted an excellent narrow-focus commentary on Gordon’s memoir.

Bleggi zeroes in specifically on how Gordon discovered husband Moore’s affair with book editor (and band friend) Eva Prinz in 2010 (she spotted some steamy texts) and all the subsequent lies, recriminations, promises, betrayals, more lies, and, ultimately, the final breakup of the marriage. Oh yeah, and the dissolution of Sonic Youth.

Sonic Youth

It’s a great article. Writes Bleggi:

“Sonic Youth’s final show at the SWU Music & Arts festival in São Paulo is available to watch on YouTube. Gordon says she’s never watched it and never will, which is impressive considering how vivid her memory is of all of Moore’s “phony” mannerisms from that day, from giving Mark Ibold a double slap on the back as they walked on stage, to Moore telling the audience, “I can’t wait to see you again!” Writes Gordon: “I remember wondering what the audience was picking up on or thinking about this raw, weird pornography of strain and distance. What they saw and what I saw were probably two different things.” As a Sonic Youth audience member myself during their final days, I can confirm that, yes, what we were all perceiving was much different image than the reality of what was occurring inside the band. When watching the video of the SWU show now, Gordon’s anguish and Moore’s sense of excitement contrast louder than the music, but at that time there was still so much speculation as to what was causing their split. The idea of infidelity breaking up indie rock’s royal couple seemed too clichéd to possibly be a reality. But it was indeed a stereotypical but nonetheless ugly and sad ending: “A male midlife crisis. Another woman. A double life.” In the end, a band as unconventional as Sonic Youth was destroyed by something so played out.”

Read his entire essay HERE. Can’t wait to read the entire book, either.

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