1990's "Goo" is a somewhat patchy affair, but it does contain one of my favourite ever Sonic Youth tracks - "Tunic (Song for Karen)" - so I was slightly bemused on listening to the remastered 2005 release to find "Disappearer", with backing vocals by Don Fleming, vying for my attention. It was released as a single - prior to "Kool Thing" and "Dirty Boots" - so I ought to remember it. Latterly, it seems to be those songs featuring Thurston Moore on vocal duties which work the best for me; this was by no mean always the case, previously.
Another mild surprise was just how much I enjoyed the studio outtake, "Lee #2", which didn't make the cut first time around. The Deluxe Edition features 31 tracks in total, 20 of which are newly (well, 3 years ago recently) mixed outtakes, b-sides and rehearsals; all of which adds up, of course, to a far more comprehensive document or snapshot of that period in between "Sister" and "Dirty". Mixed by Aaron Mullen for the 2005 repackage, "Lee #2" is easily up there with any of those songs on the original vinyl release.
Here's an excerpt of what Mullen had to say regarding the remastering process:
"While reference CD’s of the new mastering were being made, listened to, and commented on, we were sorting out bonus tracks. The demo version of the complete album which had been previously bootlegged, and which many people have long preferred to the album proper, was an obvious thing to include. The sound of the released versions of the demos had always been a bummer. Thurston pointed out that the bootleg disks of the demos sounded better than the band’s own version which they released through the (now-defunct) Sonic Death Fan Club. So we dug out the original mix DAT and checked that out. It was better than the Fan Club CD. Then we dug out the 1/2” multitracks, and were totally blown away by the sounds Jim Waters had captured on the original tape."
Thurston Moore: guitar, vocals; Lee Ranaldo; guitar;
Kim Gordon: guitar, vocals; Steve Shelley: drums.
Produced by Nick Sansano; Ron St. Germain; Sonic Youth.
Mastered by Howie Weinberg.