Fun Fun Fun Fest Live Shot: Chelsea Light Moving

Sonic Youth frontman Thurston Moore gets wasted

Fun Fun Fun Fest Live Shot: Chelsea Light Moving
photo by Shelley Hiam

“Bands who don’t break strings: don’t trust them,” laughed Thurston Moore through his boyish grin after the second string snap within the course of his band Chelsea Light Moving’s 45-minute FFF set.

The first went with the quartet’s opening salvo, “Burroughs,” bludgeoning through rattled riffs as twisted as the tripping art of the song’s literary namesake.

While Moore’s new outfit echoes with traces of Sonic Youth, most notably in the melodic, Rather Ripped recall of songs like “Sleeping Where I Fall” and the distortion-braced crackle warping of “Groovy & Linda,” the songs from CLM’s eponymous debut LP venture more stylistically eclectic, at times thundering rhythms that’d match the festival’s thrashing Black stage across the park.

“Frank O’Hara Hit” meandered atop a low rumbling from Samara Lubelski’s intimidating bass, but “Empires of Time” shook harder, as Moore’s mop-topped hair flung about his face. With him dedicating the song to Roky Erickson, the 13th Floor Elevators' influence bled through behind the howling declaration, “We are the third eye of rock & roll,” and precipitated the second string change in the midst of the maelstrom.

“I come to get alighted. I come to get wasted,” spit Moore as the blistering riffs of epic closer “Alighted” melted into heavier drops of percussion. The thrashing, nearly 10-minute-long finale ultimately ceded into a blurred cacophony of feedback from guitars thrust against the amps, the band leaving the stage drowned in a wash of distortion.

For more Fun Fun Fun Fest coverage, see For photo galleries from the fest, see
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