October 26, 2011
Better than: VH1's I Love The '90s.
2011 has been a pretty big year for grunge music. As this year marks the 20th anniversary of albums like Nirvana's Nevermind, Pearl Jam's Ten, and Soundgarden's Badmotorfinger, there seems to be a bit of a revival currently going on.
When these bands came to prominence in the early '90s, it was with perfect timing to reclaim the purity and dignity of rock 'n' roll from the ostentatious hair metal acts -- and, with Soundgarden's recent reunion and return to touring, the band is once again poised to salvage the genre from the Foster the Peoples of the world.
The band's stop at Verizon Theatre in Grand Prairie last night saw them in peak form, not missing a step despite their 13-year break from performing; Matt Cameron's drumming is just as thunderous and precise as ever, Chris Cornell's highest wails can still shatter champagne glasses, and Kim Thayil's chops are still razor sharp.
Never did the band give off the dreaded I'm-just-here-for-the-paycheck vibe. Instead they came off more than content in their role as the Gods of Grunge. Last night, it felt like they were saviors of rock 'n' roll as well. There's just something about a horde of people, fists raised, aggressively shouting out the words to "Outshined" over a wall of blistering guitars that makes modern day synth-pop/indie rock feel so puny by comparison.
Although Cornell intimated at one point that the band's new album will be released in the spring, the band refrained from previewing any new material.
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Personal Bias: For my money there isn't a better sounding live song that "Jesus Christ Pose" with its chaotic and brutal drums and unrelenting guitars. Chris Cornell's solo touring bands always did a phenomenal job with it, but Soundgarden's version is other-worldly good.
Random Note: While Cornell was waiting on Thayil to tune before "Rusty Cage" he started playing the riff from Johnny Cash's cover of the song.
Random (Local) Celeb Sighting: I've seen Chris Cornell four times now and somehow every single time I've ended up standing/sitting near Taz Bentley. I guess the dude's a pretty big Cornell fan.
Searching With My Good Eye Closed
Jesus Christ Pose
Blow Up The Outside World
The Day I Tried To Live
Burden In My Hand
Fell On Black Days
Black Hole Sun
4th Of July
Room a Thousand Years Wide
Beyond the Wheel
Slaves and Bulldozers