*** 1/2"SISTER." Sonic Youth. SST. "Beautiful confusion," a phrase from the song "Kill Time," is as good a description of this New York quartet's music as there is. This album of art-damaged, Iggy Pop-grounded rock sprung from Catholic psyches ("I cross myself, it doesn't help," sings Thurston Moore on "White Cross"), is willfully tense and disorienting yet wonderfully--and very sensually--cathartic.
Musically, "Sister" is a further refinement of the style established with 1985's "Bad Moon Rising" and perfected on last year's "Evol." Rather than using bridges to get the songs from A to B, Sonic Youth generally plunges the listener into chasms of guitar feedback and/or rhythmic shapelessness with dizzying effect before restoring any sense of order.