May 302014



  13 Responses to “Just When I Thought I Might Warm Up to Pearl Jam a Notch…I End Up Liking Them Even Less!”

  1. misterioso

    Pearl Jam. They really suck. But fortunately nothing can make me like them less at this point. By a calculus that factors in overall suckiness, sales, and critical reputation, they rank among the suckiest bands of all time. They’re like the Jefferson Airplane of 90s rock, if you know what I mean.

  2. I don’t like their music at all, except for their version of Crazy Mary on the Sweet Relief album ( NOTE: I can’t stand Eddie Vedder’s voice but I love this song and his voice is easier to take than Victoria Williams so maybe he just wins by default). And I was befuddled by their popularity when they first appeared because the songs/performance/production on that first album is particularly egregious.

    But there is something that keeps me from hating them like I hate the Jefferson Airplane or the Red Hot Chili Peppers. It might be because they seem like they are fairly down to earth (possibly just for effect, but still, convincing) and they still seem to be huge fans of music even though their not particularly good at making it.

  3. BigSteve

    This clip is weird. Why play the song in that arrangement? The sad thing is that I can hear them doing a credible version of it using the original rhythm. It seems to fit their sound a lot better than this wishy washy folkie take on it.

  4. Nailed it. Pearl Jam have a reputation which far exceeds their rubbish music. They are pretentious slop, and yet for some reason a vast number of fat heads rate them as thinking person’s rock.

  5. I don’t particularly dislike this or Pearl Jam in general. Both get a solid “meh” from me.

  6. Agreed — they did a good job on that song. I sort of liked Pearl Jam’s single “The Fixer” for a few weeks, but listening to it now — it’s just not that good.

    Total aside — another standout track on that Sweet Relief compilation is “Summer of Drugs” by Soul Asylum .

  7. Damn — Lou Reed pops up doing Crazy Mary! Seems be having trouble with his shades on this night.

  8. cherguevara

    I’m curious about the context of this clip. It reminds me of Crowded House, who tend to goof around and play some spontaneous covers. If Pearl Jam planned out this cover, then I agree, it is lame, but if it is something that Eddie Vedder just started singing over some other tune, wouldn’t that make it a bit cooler? I generally put Pearl Jam in the Dave Grohl category – they seem like good guys, even if I’m not much of a fan myself. There was a remixed, anniversary, version of their first album, I haven’t heard it, but I think their motivation for doing this were reasons not far from CDM’s comments.

  9. ladymisskirroyale

    I’m sorry, but you are not allowed to be dressed up as a suburban dad on the way to a bbq when you sing that song, let alone the Buzzcocks. Has he no shame?

  10. Summer of drugs is great. About half that album is really fantastic (Evan Dando, Buffalo Tom, Shudder to Think) and the other half is crap (Michelle Shocked, Waterboys).

  11. It seems like it was partially done off the cuff owing to the introduction, but still, he knew the Buzzcocks were going to be on the same bill with him in advance, right? I guess it’s just his approach to the off-the-cuff nod that bugged me. Why did he have to apply his one mode of singing to that song? Wouldn’t a few nice words have sufficed? I do agree with your Dave Grohl comparison, so maybe I can go back to liking them a little bit as long as I don’t listen to their music.

    I have been meaning to complain about their anniversary edition remix of their first album. I read about that in TapeOp, and it really pissed me off. That’s the album that has carried them through the years and will fund the college educations and mortgages of their progeny for 2 generations. Live with it, man. It was a creature of its time, but that’s what got them to the dance and won the dance-off. It’s like taking your wedding album from 25 years ago and retouching your and your spouse’s hairdos to get away from the time when you were married. Can I shave down my massive jawline while I’m at it? I wouldn’t change a thing about my wife, but if I needed to, should I? I don’t think it’s right for the legacy of the moment. Let it be. Just do like the rest of us and only pull out your wedding album and grin and bear it every 10 years.

  12. cherguevara

    Couldn’t agree more. One area where this is rampant is the remixing for surround, which is an amusing novelty but I cannot take it seriously as a listener. A very successful audio engineer who posts on another internet site I frequent has posted several times that he thinks multitracks should be destroyed when an album is complete. Don’t George Lucas your stuff, it doesn’t make it better. Look at that version of “I have the touch” on the Peter Gabriel best of, he made it all dorky. Or ZZ Top changing all the drum sounds on their earlier recordings. I hear how George Martin made “Help!” and “Rubber Soul” more… tasteful(?) by remixing them in stereo in 1986, but I don’t think they are better or cooler. If you’re not happy with what you made in the past, make something new, instead of retracing your steps.

  13. “Don’t George Lucas Your Stuff!” should be printed on t-shirts for musicians, film directors, etc.

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