This single (we have the 12”) still makes me feel warm with nostalgia. Mudhoney sneers and drones through the Sonic Youth song, and Kim Gordon completely embodies the sickness of the Mudhoney track: she vomits, not sings, the lyrics. It’s great stuff. Sub Pop released it in 1988, before Mudhoney had even celebrated its first birthday and just after Sonic Youth cemented their reputation with Daydream Nation. It was the second single in Sub Pop’s deeply lamented Singles of the Month Club.
Less than a year later, Matt Lukin’s ex-bandmates, the Melvins, responded in 1989 with a Mudhoney/Sonic Youth split of their own: the Melvins tackle the B-side to “Touch Me I’m Sick” (“Sweet Young Thing Ain’t Sweet No More”), and Bay Area noisemakers Steel Pole Bathtub cover Sonic Youths “I Dreamed, I Dream.” Boner Records parodied the “Touch Me I’m Sick” cover and Sub Pop logo for the Melvins side and Sonic Youth’s Death Valley 69 EP for their side. Interestingly, Steel Pole Bathtub’s drummer, Darren Morey, formerly played in Mr. Epp and the Calculations with Mudhoney’s Mark Arm.
One web site claims that the Melvins recorded this record as a “diss” of Lukin’s new band. Although a Maximum Rock & Roll interview with Mudhoney indicates some tension between the two bands, I have a hard time believing that there was some Suge Knight/2-Pac shit goin’ down here. The Melvins seethe out the song, emphasizing how the song’s sinister undercurrent. Clearly, this is no pisstake.
We like Steel Pole Bathtub’s cover, too.