Sunday, March 26, 2006

my 'PEARL JAM' album review

well even though almost half of the new album has been leaked already, i've still decided to do my own little review of the new album...i've been very lucky over the past month or so to have been allowed to listen to the record on numerous occassions. i'm not allowed to say who hooked me up, in fear of them getting in trouble, but i am very grateful for their generosity!

1.LIFE WASTED (music:gossard/words:vedder)
most of you have probably already heard this one, I think it's a great opening track to the album...a very upbeat rock song that really sets the tone for the beginning of the album. To me the lyrics seem like they could be answering 'SAVE YOU' from 'RIOT ACT'. this is a song about someone being down and almost out, and then fighting back to save themselves from a 'life wasted'.

I HAVE FACED IT...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN
I ESCAPED IT...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN
HAVING TASTED...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN
OH I ERASED IT...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN

rumor has it that the band originally planned on this song being the first single so much that they even made a video for it...will we ever see it?? one can only wonder and hope so....

2.WORLD WIDE SUICIDE (m:vedder/w:vedder)
OK, i'm positive EVERYONE has heard this song by now, if not you must go to ITunes right now and spend the 99 pennies to download it....DO IT...NOW...GO!!!
anyways, i think this is a great song...not the best on the album but still damn good...enough said.

3.COMATOSE (m:mccready,gossard/w:vedder)
another of the 'leaked' songs, the version out there now is a bit different than the actual album version. the biggest difference i noticed, is in the beginning when eddie starts to sing, his vocals are only on one side and the other side is the music. for some reason, and i don't know why, it just really sounds incredible. this is definitely one of my favorites on the new record. i've always enjoyed the live version the band did a year ago, but this studio version blows it away. i think this song could easily have fit onto 'VS' or 'VITALOGY'. eddie just sounds very raw and energized, it reminds me of his vocals from 'BLOOD'. some very interesting lyrics as well:

CONSIDER ME AN OBJECT. PUT ME IN A VACUUM.
FREE OF ALL CONDITIONS. FREE OF AIR & FRICTION.
YEH,I'LL BE HANGING UPSIDE DOWN.
AND THERE I WILL SWING.
FOR ALL ETERNITY.

FEEL IT RISING...YEH,NEXT STOP FALLING.
FEEL IT RISING...COMATOSE,WITH NO FEAR OF FALLING.

CONSIDER ME AN ABCESS. LEAVE ME IN MY VACUUM.
BLOOD ON ALL THE PISTONS. RUNNING MY TRANSMISSION.

FEEL IT RISING...YEH,NEXT STOP FALLING.
FEEL IT RISING...COMATOSE,WITH NO FEAR OF FALLING.


FEEL IT RISING...YEH,NEXT STOP FALLING.
FEEL IT RISING...

HIGH ABOVE I'LL BREAK THE LAW. IF IT'S ILLEGAL
TO BE IN LOVE...LEAVE THE HATRED...ON THE CROSS.

YEH,I'LL BE HANGING UPSIDE DOWN.
AND THERE I WILL SWING.
FOR ALL ETERNITY.

FEEL IT RISING...YEH,NEXT STOP FALLING.
FEEL IT RISING...COMATOSE,WITH NO FEAR OF FALLING.


FEEL IT RISING...YEH,NEXT STOP FALLING.
FEEL IT RISING...SOMETHING NEVER THOUGHT YOU'D NEVER BE A PART OF.

sorry, i just had to put all the lyrics down for this one....such a great song.

4.SEVERED HAND (m:vedder/w:vedder)
another one of the 'leaked tracks', this is the 4th straight rocker to open the album. seems the band really wanted to make a statement by doing this, and i think it works.
for some reason, the first 45 seconds or so of this song remind me of something that might have been on SOUNDGARDEN's 'SUPERUNKNOWN' album. when the guitars kick in i'm reminded of GUNS N' ROSES's 'WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE' mixed with a bit of 'PORCH'. i must admit i wasn't really blown away by this song at first, but now after a bunch of listens i absolutely LOVE it!! it's a very weird & interesting song, especially the lyrics:

TRIED TO WALK...FOUND A SEVERED HAND.
RECOGNIZED IT FROM THE WEDDING BAND.
SAID IT'S OKAY, DO YOU WANT SOME MORE?
I SAID...YEH.
YOU'LL SEE DRAGONS AFTER 3 OR 4
I SAID...YEH.

apparently this song is about being wasted on something...any takers on what it might be?

5.MARKER IN THE SAND (m:mccready,vedder/w:vedder)
after 4 straight 'rock' songs, the band slows the pace down a little, but not a lot. this is another song that i just didn't get right away, i think after the 5 or 6th time i heard it is when it really clicked with me, especially the last few minutes of the song. the song keeps a steady beat throughout much of it, until that last 90 seconds or so when the band just goes off on a jam session, which ends with BOOM joining in on the organ for the last 30 seconds. i think this song will defintely be a highlight for me when they play it live, especially if they extend that end jam and have it lead into another song. the opening lines to the song are:

THERE IS A MARKER...NO ONE SEES IT CAUSE THE SAND
HAS COVERED OVER...ALL THE MESSAGES IT KEPT
MISUNDERSTANDING...WHAT ORIGIANL TRUTH WAS
AND OUT EXPANDING...IN A FAITH, BUT NOT IN LOVE.

6.PARACHUTES (m:gossard/w:vedder)
i had high hopes for this song, especially after reading the band go on & on about how beautfiul this song was. i'm not sure if it's because the song is so much slower than the first 5 songs, but for whatever reason i just don't love this song (yet). it's definetly starting to grow on me, when i listen to the lyrics i imagine an old man lying on his death bed and telling his wife, family and friends how lucky he was to have them all and much he loves them. i can definetly hear some BEATLES influence going on with this song, it also reminds me a bit of 'ALL THOSE YESTERDAYS'. anyway, i'm sure i'll come around and end up loving this song too.

7.UNEMPLOYABLE (m:cameron,mccready/w:vedder)
i'm assuming that just about everyone has also heard this song already, it's the b-side to the 'WORLD WIDE SUICIDE' digital single...if you haven't heard it, seriously go to ITunes NOW!! anyway, this was another song that took me forever to get into, but now i am really digging it, especially the 'OH OHH OHH OHH' harmonies throughout the song. plus, this song contains one of my favorite lines on the album:
THINKING IF HE CAN'T SLEEP HOW WILL HE EVER DREAM?

8.BIG WAVE (m:ament/w:vedder)
yep, you guessed it this song is about surfing...

I USED TO BE CRUSTACEON
IN AN UNDERWATER NATION
AND I SURF IN CELEBRATION
OF A BILLION ADAPTATIONS...
GOT ME A BIG WAVE, RIDE ME A BIG WAVE, GOT ME A BIG WAVE...

even though matt cameron didn't write the music, i can't help but hear a little bit of SOUNDGARDEN's 'KICKSTAND' when i hear this song. it's a quick little rocker that should be fun to see/hear live.

9.GONE (m:vedder/w:vedder)
EVERYONE seems to be very excited about this one, especially after hearing the incredible version eddie did on tour last fall. well, fear not, the studio version is just as good as eddie's solo version. this version isn't much different from the demo, the band adds a bit of piano and drums...keeping it very simple. this song reminds me a lot of 'THUMBING MY WAY', i'm not positive but i think eddie even uses the same guitar on this song. if you like the demo version from last year's (or would that be this year's) x-mas single, then you will like the album version.

10.WASTED REPRISE (m:gossard/w:vedder)
this is a quick little version of the chorus from 'LIFE WASTED', just BOOM playing an organ as eddie sings:

I HAVE FACED IT...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN
I ESCAPED IT...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN
HAVING TASTED...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN
OH I ERASED IT...A LIFE WASTED
I'M NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN

i think the whole song is about 50 seconds long, but it's very beautiful. it sounds like something that could have easily been on the 'MIRRORBALL' album with NEIL YOUNG.

11.ARMY RESERVE (m:ament/w:vedder,echols)
this is another song that took me a few listens before i could get into it, but now i love it!!
the song has a similiar tempo to 'MARKER IN THE SAND', a little bit slower, but still rocking.
my favorite part of the song is eddie's voice during the chorus:

I'M NOT BLIND
I CAN SEE IT COMING
LOOKS LIKE LIGHTNING
IN MY CHILDS EYE

I'M NOT FRANTIC
I CAN FEEL IT COMING
DARLING YOU'LL SAVE ME
IF YOU SAVE YOURSELF

in case you were wondering who the ECHOLS is that co-wrote the song with eddie, it's DAMIEN ECHOLS of the WEST MEMPHIS 3.

12.COME BACK (m:mcready,vedder/w:vedder)
this is definetly one of my favorite songs on the record, it is a song about losing a loved one and hoping that maybe someday they will 'come back'. knowing that eddie wrote the lyrics for this one i wonder who he is talking about...my guess would be johnny ramone, since they became very close. there's no other pearl jam song i can think of that sounds anything like this one. it's a very raw bluesy song that features BOOM on the organ and eddie sounding incredible as he sings:

AND THESE DAYS, THEY LINGER ON
AND IN THE NIGHT. AS I'M WAITING ON
THE REAL POSSIBILITY I MAY MEET YOU IN MY DREAMS
I GO TO SLEEP...
THERE MUST BE AN OPEN DOOR
FOR YOU TO
COME BACK

the harmonies are even better at the end of the song eddie wails away over and over again:

I'LL BE HERE
COME BACK
COME BACK

this could have easily been the album closer, but the band choose to use an even better song to do that...

13.INSIDE JOB (m:mccready,vedder/w:mccready)
this WITHOUT a doubt is my FAVORITE song on the album. it was the first song i heard from the album, it would make a great opener, but it makes an even better closer. there is a 2 minute musical intro to the song with acoustic guitars and then a piano that reminds me a bit of 'THE WHALE SONG'. after all of that eddie finally begins the song:

UNDERNEATH THIS SMILE LIES EVERYTHING
ALL MY HOPES, ANGER, PRIDE & SHAME
MAKE MYSELF A PACT, NOT TO SHUT DOORS ON THE PAST
JUST FOR TODAY...I AM FREE

it hard to describe, but when eddie sings the words just seem to slide out of his mouth and intersect with one another. i don't know if that makes any sense, but i can't recall ever hearing eddie sing like this before, so it's very hard to describe.

the chorus, is simple yet, powerful:
I WILL NOT LOSE MY FAITH
IT'S AN INSIDE JOB TODAY

MIKE has always been known for his guitar playing, so it's hard for me to believe he wrote such an AMAZING song. he should be very proud of it....the first thing i thought of when i heard this song was that, for some reason, it could have been a TEMPLE OF THE DOG song. i was completely blown away by this song and it's only gotten better with each listen.

**MY FINAL THOUGHTS**
the first couple of times i listened to this record i thought "it's a decent record, there's some really cool songs and a bunch that are okay." now that i've had more than a few listens and have been able to really digest this record, i can honestly say that this is really an incredible PEARL JAM record that just about every fan will like. there really isn't one song on here that makes me want to skip over it, the record just gets better and better with each listen. i am very excited to see the band perform all of these songs live. finally, i can definetly see this record ending up as one of my favorite PEARL JAM records EVER (for the record, 'NO CODE ' is my favorite).

11 Comments:

Blogger Frank Stallone said...

Are you the guy that won't let the Easy Street Records performance be released?

6:56 PM  
Blogger swiet linska said...

you're right - you are one very lucky man! great review.. i can't wait for the release.

12:10 AM  
Blogger Laurence Hopkins said...

Info on the Severed hand and wedding band...

"The fortitude and heart of the individual soldiers takes your breath away. The very first soldier I talked to at the hospital -- a beautiful young MP who had lost her hand and part of her forearm -- told me of being sent up to defend the roof of an Iraqi police station, only to have two rockets rip through her position, the second of which tore off her hand and buried her under broken sand bags.

Her squad mates rushed to the roof, carried her downstairs and placed her on the hood of a humvee, where the team medic frantically worked to stop her bleeding.

But her most vivid memory is of her sergeant and another platoon mate, returning to the roof against orders, digging through the sand, finding her severed hand, removing her wedding band, carrying it downstairs and placing it in her remaining hand."

http://www.fisherhouse.org/inTheNews/behindLines_10_23_SFG.shtml

5:09 AM  
Anonymous some guy from KC said...

I think that from the songs that I have heard so far that Parachutes is AMAZING, to the point that I cried the first time I heard it. I didn't even need to know the lyrics to it. It remninded me of the first time I heard Release, where this feeling came over me that drove me to tears. Now that I have heard the song several times, and have a decent grasp on the lyrics,it grows all the more on me to the point of a healthy obsession. It is a very touching song, that makes me stop what I am doing and get into that Pearl Jam zone. I can't wait to hear the rest of the CD. By the way...I have already pre-ordered the CD so yeah, have bought it already, I won't pirate anything, especially from PJ.

10:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How have you heard ALL of the songs? I only got the 4 leaked songs.....

2:56 AM  
Anonymous Alessiana said...

Wow... so a person who's favorite album is No Code believes this album may be their best yet?

::faints::

6:30 PM  
Anonymous Alessiana said...

I haven't heard a song beyond the two that have been released. I'd rather enjoy as you're enjoying it.

All at once!!

6:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heard the whole thing today as well:

WOW!

Come Back = Gorgeous and moving, full

Inside Job = Powerful & Epic

Best album since Vitalogy, on par with Yield, but more complete and rounded. This will be huge for the band. Great tunes, can't wait for the tour to hear some of these live!

2:12 PM  
Blogger heather said...

Heya,
thanks for stopping by my blog and letting me know about this review. I can't wait to hear the new album! thank ya sir.

1:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great review my man, I think my expectations were so high that the first listen was a must but I got no sense of what the album was. I read your review and have gone back 4 more times and it really is great.

Thanks
Butch Cassidy
Scotland

7:48 AM  
Anonymous niterider said...

Just heard the whole album for the first time - awesome!!

Can't wait till I can buy a proper copy!

1:32 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home