Pin It
Kim Gordon
Kim Gordon wears an X-Girl t-shirt, photographed by Corinne Day Dazed & Confused issue 11, 1995Dazed & Confused issue 11, 1995

Kim Gordon addresses her controversial Lana Del Rey comments

The Sonic Youth founder previously slated Lana’s lack of politics, asking, ‘Why doesn’t she just off herself?’

If this year has been the year of explosive memoirs, Kim Gordon’s Girl in a Band was the one that burned the brightest (apart from Grace Jones’, obviously ­– we’re still not quite over those cocaine tips). Anyway, the Godmother of Grunge didn’t pull any punches in her autobiography, from calling Courtney Love “utterly self-absorbed” to saying that Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan was a “cry baby” and that her ex-husband and former Sonic Youth band mate Thurston Moore was a “coward”.

In an early (now-deleted) extract from A Girl in a Band, Gordon also spoke about how unimpressed she was with Lana Del Rey’s lack of interest in feminism, saying: "Today we have someone like Lana Del Rey, who doesn’t even know what feminism is, who believes women can do whatever they want, which, in her world, tilts toward self-destruction, whether it’s sleeping with gross old men or getting gang raped by bikers." Gordon also slated the singer for romanticising suicide. “If she really truly believes it’s beautiful when young musicians go out on a hot flame of drugs and depression, why doesn’t she just off herself?”

Now, in a podcast with Bret Easton Ellis, the Sonic Youth founder has clarified her comments, saying that they were in response to feeling protective of Frances Bean Cobain. “"Initially it was about just seeing something in the paper… something about how rock stars should just like kill themselves with drugs, and Frances Bean had really reacted to that and I felt really actually weirdly protective of Frances.”

“So I was basically just trying to point out that it was a persona and I just offhandedly said what I said...I guess I could have articulated the whole thing a lot better. I've only really seen one video with her hanging around with these older biker dudes and I just think that if the music was more interesting then I would like it, but it's so conventional. That's why it's popular, because it appeals to broad bases."

Listen to the entire conversation here