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Tipsheet

Retired Rock Band Sonic Youth Releases Two Albums to Fund Abortion Rights

AP Photo/Diane Bondereff

Now-defunct rock band Sonic Youth released two live albums this week to raise funds for abortion rights, Rolling Stone reported.

According to their report, the albums, released via Bandcamp, are intended to raise funds for organizations fighting back against S.B. 8 – Texas’ newly-enacted law that bans abortions after fetal heartbeat detection. As I’ve covered, the law is currently being challenged at the Supreme Court. 

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The pair of albums, recorded in 1995 and 2006, respectively, were completed in two prominent Texas cities – Dallas and Austin. The funds are reportedly going towards pro-abortion organizations Fund Texas Choice and the Abortion Support Network. 

“In times like these it feels good to be able to take some action instead of being totally frustrated by the system,” bandmate Kim Gordon told Rolling Stone. “This Texas law is pure old-west-style vigilante, cowboy DIY mentality that goes against the constitution. We will only overcome this if we’re an engine coming out against this regressive and inhumane law, by coming together. I hope this brings awareness and encourages other people to join the fight by donating.”

S.B. 8 allows individuals to pursue legal action against anyone who provides an illegal abortion or “aids or abets” someone seeking an illegal abortion. Those who successfully bring lawsuits under S.B. 8 can receive $10,000.

Sonic Youth also released Texas-themed t-shirts to accompany the release of the albums. 

“Sonic Youth support a national and world community where abortion is embraced as health care and a human right,” the band wrote in a statement on their website. “The enduring support from Lone Star state fans for SY warrants a favor returned specifically for this state’s fanbase.”

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The band, which broke up indefinitely in 2011, joins the likes of celebrities like Billie Eilish and Phoebe Bridgers who’ve spoken out against S.B. 8. 

As I reported, Eilish played a show at the Austin City Limits (ACL) festival last month where she stopped her set to attack the law. Also at ACL, singer Phoebe Bridgers’ set got cut short due to technical malfunctions. To make up for it, the festival organizers donated to Texas Abortion Funds to “show our support for Phoebe and an organization close to her heart.”

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