Music News

Take Cover: A Technicolor Yawn Covers Sonic Youth

See also: The Swamp Coolers Cover "Secret Agent Man" Local noise/rock duo A Technicolor Yawn shares a noisy aesthetic with Sonic Youth, so it was only natural for them to decide to do an all Sonic Youth set for Cover the Crescent.

"When you think of the Venn diagram of overlapping interests between two musicians like us, [Sonic Youth] is at the center, right there," says drummer John Schampel. "It was a no brainer, we were like, 'We're going to do this.'"

The band will perform "Silver Rocket" and a bunch of other Sonic Youth tunes tonight (with Sun Ghost, Nowhere Man and Whiskey Girl, and Vinyl Station) at Crescent Ballroom.

"They're incapable of sucking," Schampel adds. "Everything I've ever seen them do was really good or just mind blowingly amazing. They're too conscious, they're too awesome."

One of the biggest challenges was recreating Sonic Youth's sound with one guitar.

"I had to learn these songs, which on a lot of fundamental levels are very simple and there's just layers. There's a lot of multitracking and they record their stuff live, but then the eighth guitar is not live, it's recorded over the shit. I had to distill those things, the important kind of notes or noises or whatever down to a way that I would play them," says singer/guitarist Jon Douglas.

"Since I already have their influence in my blood, I can kind of do that, but I have to learn how to do as many things with that guitar as I can, even though it's just one."

The challenge proved to be a bit of a learning experience for A Technicolor Yawn.

"I feel like I'm a better guitar player than I was two weeks ago," Douglas says. "I don't think I've improved at all in five years, so that's something."

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See our Take Cover archives for more Arizona bands taking on national songs.

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Melissa Fossum
Contact: Melissa Fossum