Sunday, November 1, 2009
The Importance Of SST Records
Founded by Greg Ginn in 1978 SST went on to be the most important record label of the 80's. Originally called Solid State Transmitters Ginn shortened the name to SST when he went from selling electrical equipment to selling records by his band Black Flag. During it's heyday the label released classic albums by Husker Du, Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr., Black Flag, The Descendants, The Minutemen and the Meat Puppets. What made SST's roster so great was the diversity of the records that were coming out. Although all the bands could loosely be placed under "Punk" they sounded very different from each other. Black Flag created a sped up version of punk that would be known as Hardcore. Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr. featured two of the most innovative guitarists in music with Thurston Moore and J. Mascis. The Descendents balanced classic pop and punks raw aggression while The Meat Puppets mixed punk with the psychedelic sounds of the 60's. Meanwhile Husker Du and The Minutemen both went on to release classic double albums, a risky move from a genre that started in response to the lengthy prog-rock albums of the 70's. Eventually SST's bands would leave the label or break up causing Ginn to sign and release lesser talent. Still you can put the labels early releases up against any other label before or since.