Although Nirvana and Pearl Jam may have been the most commercially successful bands of the 1990s Seattle movement, Soundgarden was every bit as important and influential. Part Black Sabbath/part Ramones, Soundgarden helped unite both punks and metalheads--one of the first alternative bands to do so. Largely due to vocalist Chris Cornell's signature wail and guitarist Kim Thayil's thunderous riffs, the band gained a huge fanbase by the mid '90s. However, the group called it a day in 1997, with drummer Matt Cameron joining Pearl Jam and Cornell going on to record solo and, with the instrumentalists of Rage Against the Machine, as a member of Audioslave.
Japanese only SHM-CD (Super High Material CD - playable on all CD players) pressing. Universal. 2008.
"Fell on Black Days," indeed. Seattle sludge slingers Soundgarden made a living out of cathartic, woe-is-me wailing (we're talking the banshee vocals of Chris Cornell and the crypt-creaking guitar of Kim Thayil), but this wallowing in grim depression ironically proved to be the band's most uplifting career effort. When the reclusive Cornell ventures out of his shy-guy shell, it's typically via a primal scream of cathartic emotion--he might camp it up with a sophomoric "Spoon Man," but most of this vicious disc leaps straight for your jugular. Generations in the post-millennial future will one day refer to this record to discover exactly how 1990s rock & roll was done. --Tom Lanham
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