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Date: Sep 06 2007

Themes: Music


1. Quote - Listen to the quote and guess what the slang means.

“The idea of playing really quiet music became something really radical.”

- Sonic Youth guitarist Thurston Moore on playing softer music after years of loud rock. (Spin)


1. Definition - Study the definition.

a drastic change from tradition; an unexpected return to fundamentals

2. Use - Learn how the slang is used.

You may have heard people say that something is rad or radical in order to say that it’s cool or something they like. This is an appropriate use of radical and it’s covered in this member lesson. People probably started using radical this way because things that break with tradition or do something totally unexpected are often, in fact, cool or likeable.

The music Thurston Moore started making with Sonic Youth in the 1980s was considered radical because it was so loud, noisy, and experimental. But now, years later, it’s what is expected of him and his band. At this point it’s radical for them to play softer, quieter music.

Playing acoustic music is actually radical for another reason as well. The word radical comes from the Latin word, radicalis which means “having roots.” The word “radish,” the name for a tasty root that grows in the ground, also comes from this word. So if you want to say that something “has roots” or has a long history, you can say it’s radical. Since quiet, acoustic music has been around a lot longer than noise rock, it’s radical for Thurston Moore to be playing it for that reason too.


1. Examples - Hear some example sentences.

“The new mayor may seem really boring, but she has a lot of radical ideas like legalizing public nudity.”

“The Internet-only marketing strategy seemed radical, but it worked.”


1. Winners - See who guessed the slang definition correctly.

liru Departing from the usual.
by liru
the fundamental movement, am i right?
by anvarputhen
it probably mean out of ordinary so that it almost reaches extreme dimensions
by Celestial_Lord
Something very different from what have been doing before.
by thaiane_porto
Edsongoes So... This is of time I was a skater boy radical means extreme. But in this case radical means favoring fundamental to play it. Am I right?
by Edsongoes
tathy1981 I think he meant that it's a very different experience for him playing another kind of music, completely different from the one he was used to play for years.
by tathy1981
Completely different from standards and common sense.
by demsy
Something drastic, thoroughgoing, different what other people do, unusual.
by look_closer
something original, completely different
by wonkapet
shimanaz something new which May have a lot of effect on others
by shimanaz
wubai holding extreme views which differ from common people
by wubai

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