The cover photo is impressive, especially on the digi-pak, though I do hope that `no animals were harmed...` etc. Pearl Jam are a bunch of likeable guys who play and sing honest to God rock`n`roll music in the way the good Lord no doubt intended. (No more religious references or imagery, I promise.) At times they remind me of a grungier, rockier Counting Crows - Eddie Vedder`s voice has some of the same gritty, urgent quality as the Crows` frontman - at other times they hit an intense, almost Beefheartian groove. The bottom line is, I like what I hear very much. It`s an album that grew on me. First time I played it I quite liked it, no more than that. Second time, a little more. Now, I love the swaggering bastard. There`s some superbly jubilant guitar from Mike McCready. Vedder sings like he means it, and the band play with both to-the-limit passion and volume and, where appropriate, sensitivity and lyrical grace. The few ballads are well worth waiting for, sung by EV with pleasingly casual panache. The extra tracks are most welcome, the packaging and booklet nicely done, and I can say that - being a late newcomer to the band - Pearl Jam rock like the best of them, and sound like a band you want to hear a lot more of the more you play them.