Sonic Youth’s Kim Gordon Is Sledging All Your Favourite ’90s Acts In Her New Memoir

Written by Emmy Mack on 5th February, 2015

Sonic Youth’s Kim Gordon Is Sledging All Your Favourite ’90s Acts In Her New Memoir

Former Sonic Youth mastermind Kim Gordon has penned a tell-all memoir in the aftermath of the band’s scandalous demise. The book is entitled Girl In A Band, and in anticipation of its impending release, she’s served up a platter of juicy quotes (via Vogue and The Guardian) showcasing Gordon’s candid trash-talking of her alt rock peers including Courtney Love, The Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan, and her former Sonic Youth bandmate/ex-husband, Thurston Moore.

The newly unveiled excerpts see Gordon, who was recently in Australia with new outfit Body/Head, recalling the events that led to the her 27-year-old marriage’s breakdown, and also show her reflecting on the difficulties of being a female rocker in the music industry.

Check out everything we’ve learned about Kim Gordon from the Girl In A Band quotes she’s dished so far, below.

She’s Not Exactly Best Mates With Courtney Love…

“No one ever questions the disorder behind her tarantula LA glamour – sociopathy, narcissism – because it’s good rock and roll, good entertainment! I have a low tolerance for manipulative, egomaniacal behaviour, and usually have to remind myself that the person might be mentally ill.”

..or Love’s former ‘secret’ boyfriend Billy Corgan.

“Courtney [Love] asked us for advice about her ‘secret affair’ with Billy Corgan. I thought, Ewwww, at even the mention of Billy Corgan, whom nobody liked because he was such a crybaby, and Smashing Pumpkins took themselves way too seriously and were in no way punk rock.”

She was instantly attracted to Thurston Moore…

“The rhythm guitarist was special. He was very tall and skinny, six feet six, he told me later, charismatic and confident-seeming, with pillowy lips.He had a glow about him I liked, and he also seemed extremely sure about what he wanted and how to get it too, though it was more a quiet self-confidence than anything brash.

“There was something wild, but not too wild, about Thurston. His guitar-playing may have been free and untamed but we came from similar middle-class academic backgrounds.”

..but she soon discovered he had a dark side, and wasn’t too fond of staplers.

“Amongst other things he had a temper which flared up whenever he put together an issue of his ‘zine, Killer, and he would become incredibly stressed out. Once, when his stapler wasn’t working, he picked it up and threw it through the window, shattering the glass. It scared me.”

Her marriage to Moore ended after she discovered text messages between him and another woman

“No one could understand how Thurston, who always had a good nose for the user, the groupie, the nutcase or the hanger-on, had let himself get pulled under by her. I did feel some compassion for Thurston … but that’s a lot different to forgiveness.”

She found her gender to be a hurdle in the music industry

“When the band first started, I went for a vocal approach that was rhythmic and spoken, but sometimes unleashed, because of all the different guitar tunings we used. When you listen to old R&B records, the women on them sang in a fierce, kick-ass way. In general, though, women aren’t really allowed to be kick-ass. Female singers who push too much, and too hard, don’t tend to last very long. They’re jags, bolts, comets: Janis Joplin, Billie Holiday. But being that woman who pushes the boundaries means you also bring in less desirable aspects of yourself. At the end of the day, women are expected to hold up the world, not annihilate it.”


Should be a very interesting read. Girl In A Band is out 24th February through Harper Collins.

Watch: Sonic Youth – Superstar


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