- Audio CD (29 April 2006)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Sony Music Cmg
- ASIN: B000ETQRCM
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 56,725 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Eighth album from grunge survivors Pearl Jam follows 2002s Riot Act. Fuelled by frustration and anger over the state of Western politics in the 21st century, they have made one of the heaviest albums of their career. Their sound has matured into classic American rock in the vein of Neil Young & Crazy Horse or Bruce Springsteen, but with a vitriolic injection of punk rock fury. The album has been hailed by fans as one of their best yet and includes the single "World Wide Suicide".
Watch Pearl Jam perform "Life Wasted", taken from this album.
While the fact that Pearl Jam are still together fourteen years after the release of their seminal debut album Ten is remarkable enough, this, their eighth studio album, provides ample evidence that they still have a marked determination to continue preaching their message.
The record opens in angry style with Vedder snarling over furious guitars that don't relent until the end of the fifth track. You'd be forgiven for thinking you'd stumbled across the latest batch of angst-fuelled, punk-loving teenagers rather than the Seattle grunge veterans. They rage against George Bush, the Iraq war and American apathy while guitarists Stone Gossard and Mike McCready serve up aggressive rock solo after solo.
However the ballads that dominated previous albums are evident here too, though they sound unnervingly similar to Bruce Springsteen's acoustic work.
Their most accomplished album in years closes in epic style with the seven minute long "Inside Job" - proving the band care little about writing three minute pop songs these days.
Long may their crusade continue. --Dan Tallis
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Top Customer Reviews
The new album features a stripped down, tighter, and more pure rock sound. Strong lead and rhythm guitar work by Gossard and Stone populate the songs, while Vedder alternates his tightly wound growling vocals with tenderness. Guitar solos, unheard for years, have returned with a vengeance and Jeff Ament's bass lines fit perfectly in the mix. This album is free of the overproduction and samples that passes as rock today, and shows us just how good a band together 15 years can sound.
Standout rockers include World Wide Suicide, Comatose, Severed Hand, and Big Wave. More melodic tracks like Markers in the Sand and Army Reserve fit in nicely without going too soft. Unemployed, Come Back, and Inside Job are more of the Daughter type PJ songs. The only discordant note on this album is the track Parachutes, with its Beatles or Queen like melodies and odd chord changes. Although a good song on its own, it basically stops the flow of the album dead in its tracks and would have been better suited as a hidden track or a B-side. This is an album more geared towards long time fans of rock in general and PJ in particular. It may not have a lot of commercial viability, which to Pearl Jam is a source of pride, but does satisfy a void in rock and roll which has existed for too long. Recommended.
Trust me, the wait is worthwhile and very rewarding for those that persist. This is a collection of tracks which really showcases the band's strengths from the upbeat and punky first three tracks, to the atmospheric album closer, Inside Job.
In between we have what, in my opinion, is the real 'standout a mile' track - Gone. I have to see this particular song has become one of my very favourite Pearl Jam tracks up there with the likes of Jeremy and Dissident from the early days. I'm quite surprised that so few of the 40-odd reviewers haven't mentioned this powerhouse of a song - great verse, superb pre-chorus bridge and simple, yet, very effective chorus.
Despite the above hyperbole, I've only given the album 4 stars. This is simply because there are, in my view, one or two fairly weak tracks which don't quite exhibit the same class as the rest. That's a huge same as this is so nearly on a par with Ten and Vs.
Any existing fan of the band will certainly get into this. For those who weren't around in the good ol' grunge days, trust us oldies and purchase without fear. You cannot fail to like such tracks as Life Wasted, World Wide Suicide, Gone, Severed Hand and Inside Job. A very strong record.
Like most have stated, it's a return to a classic Pearl Jam sound - not really a huge point for me, seeing as Binaural is one of my favourites, but comforting none-the-less.
The album starts nice and lively and breeds enthusiasm, with the catchy single, world wide suicide (track 2). An obvious single when you hear it, but that's ok. I particularly like unemployable and Army reserve both for Cameron's super tight drumming (legend) and Mike/Stone's, as ever, outstandingly rich and unique guitar sound.
The album ends with a delightful epic, showing just how creative this band have always been.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is not the best Pearl Jam album I have to say.
Clearly the band were moving away from experimenting (a bad thing) and going back to basics. Read more
The recipient was very pleased with this album. Thank you!Published 14 months ago by Karen richardson
Decided to write a review for this album based on the fact that it only has 4 stars. This is a 5* album from Pearl Jam and one of their best. Read morePublished on 17 Oct. 2013 by D. Hazlewood
Wonderful album. Gets a 5 out of 5. One for fans or for just music friends in general. As a latter, this is an album I never tire of listening to.Published on 21 July 2013 by Kaz 1