The cover was first recorded in 1991, and released seven years later on Ranaldo’s tribute album to American artist Robert Smithson, entitled Amarillo Ramp (For Robert Smithson).
Writing in the video’s description box, Ranaldo said that he unearthed the track while going through releases in his back catalogue. “I’ve been sorting through some old releases, and came across my version of John Lennon’s Isolation” he wrote, further explaining the history of the recording,
“Our dear, departed friend Epic Soundtracks [Kevin Paul Godfrey] played drums on the track, and I’ve always loved both the original and the version of the song we made, almost 30 years ago now…”
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic – which Ranaldo described as the “planetary pause” – the guitarist rationalised that he felt a level of appropriateness, in light of current events, to curate a new video for the song. “I sent a request to friends far and wide around the globe, asking for brief personal video clips of the confinement from wherever they were”, he said.
“What they saw out on their streets, in their living spaces; whatever subjective view on our current situation they wanted to send me. I cut them all together to the song as a sort of informal, intimate record of this moment.”
This new music video follows Ranaldo’s recent archive pull of three rare releases. Other songs from Amarillo Ramp (For Robert Smithson) also served as the soundtrack to a movie of the same name. That can be seen on Sonic Youth’s website.
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