Customer Reviews


416 Reviews
5 star:
 (346)
4 star:
 (48)
3 star:
 (12)
2 star:
 (5)
1 star:
 (5)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


95 of 109 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the best
I've listened to lots of music, and "Superunknown" doubtlessly stands as arguably the best album I have ever heard. Visionary, perfectly executed and technically impeccable, Soundgarden set the standard for dark hard rock with this one. I can't really think of a place to start in praising this album, but Chris Cornell's vocals are as good a place as any. From...
Published on October 20, 2001 by Wheelchair Assassin

versus
234 of 258 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 2 months of excitement ends in disappointment as the loudness wars win again; keep your original CD.
A major label announces two surround titles within a couple weeks of each other, a first in a very long time in North America where the majors have given up on surround sound since around 2005/2006 when they withdrew from the Super Audio CD/DVD-Audio format war. Could this be the push some of us have been hoping for finally starting? Soundgarden and Bob Marley both...
Published 3 months ago by Bricktop


‹ Previous | 1 242 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

234 of 258 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 2 months of excitement ends in disappointment as the loudness wars win again; keep your original CD., June 3, 2014
This review is from: Superunknown (20th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition - 4CD + 1Blu-ray Audio Disc) (Audio CD)
A major label announces two surround titles within a couple weeks of each other, a first in a very long time in North America where the majors have given up on surround sound since around 2005/2006 when they withdrew from the Super Audio CD/DVD-Audio format war. Could this be the push some of us have been hoping for finally starting? Soundgarden and Bob Marley both getting brand new 5.1 mixes?

Well after 8 weeks of asking we finally got the details of this release a few days ago in terms of the technical specs, they did go back to the original analogue multitracks to create the 5.1 mix and they did go back to the original analogue stereo master to create the vinyl, although they archived it to 24/192 and then mastered in the digital domain. Adam Kasper who produced Down on the Upside and King Animal was going to do the 5.1 mix, he has no 5.1 credits to his name so that was a bit concerning but at least he was using the multitracks so we knew we could hope for a fully discrete mix.

Now as we begin to listen we realize it was all for nought, despite all the care taken or seemingly being taken to go back to the original source material we have a release that's been slammed in true loudness wars fashion. One might have expected the regular CDs and lossy digital download files to be victims, but this is also available on Blu-ray Audio in 24-bit/96kHz stereo AND on another audiophile website (name removed in case it's against review policies) as a 24-bit/192kHz download. These are both equally as dynamically challenged as the CD! It makes no sense. People buy 24-bit to listen to on superior equipment. Dynamically lifeless music is only bearable on the cheapest in ear buds while busy commuting or working out when you're not really paying attention to the music.

Why Soundgarden? Why? Why doesn't the sonic integrity of your music mean more to you? Why Adam Kasper? Why? You're listening to this on studio monitors, you know what the original tape sounds like! We have gotten close to it with the original CD. This is so frustrating it's hard to put into words. Please, let the tipping point be nigh. Let's push this review to the top so people know not to waste their hard-earned money supporting mediocre releases.

Here's the dynamic range log of the 24/192 download.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Analyzed: Soundgarden / Superunknown (Deluxe Edition)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
DR5 0.00 dB -6.46 dB 3:53 01-Let Me Drown
DR6 0.00 dB -7.69 dB 5:13 02-My Wave
DR7 0.00 dB -8.02 dB 4:43 03-Fell On Black Days
DR6 0.00 dB -6.45 dB 4:26 04-Mailman
DR6 0.00 dB -6.62 dB 5:07 05-Superunknown
DR6 0.00 dB -7.76 dB 6:10 06-Head Down
DR6 0.00 dB -8.12 dB 5:19 07-Black Hole Sun
DR6 0.00 dB -6.68 dB 4:07 08-Spoonman
DR6 0.00 dB -7.23 dB 5:48 09-Limo Wreck
DR7 0.00 dB -8.25 dB 5:20 10-The Day I Tried To Live
DR6 0.00 dB -6.90 dB 1:34 11-Kickstand
DR7 0.00 dB -7.88 dB 4:17 12-Fresh Tendrils
DR6 0.00 dB -7.05 dB 5:09 13-4th Of July
DR8 0.00 dB -10.42 dB 2:15 14-Half
DR6 0.00 dB -7.86 dB 7:04 15-Like Suicide
DR6 -0.24 dB -7.55 dB 3:18 16-She Likes Surprises
DR6 -0.54 dB -8.05 dB 5:27 30-The Day I Tried To Live (Alternate Mix)
DR6 -0.20 dB -8.12 dB 5:13 31-4th Of July (Instrumental)
DR6 -0.20 dB -7.55 dB 5:09 32-Superunknown (Instrumental)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Number of tracks: 19
Official DR value: DR6

Samplerate: 192000 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 24
Bitrate: 7813 kbps
Codec: FLAC

Stop the madness. Vote with your wallet. When these guys stop selling records they will ask why, they will read social media, they will see that people are tired of being fooled by the "loudness is better" approach that idiots in suits at record labels are telling you we want. We don't want that. We have NEVER signed petitions begging for more loudness wars releases. We have never pined for dynamically lifeless music.

Dear Lord PLEASE let them not muck up the Bob Marley release.

Adam Kasper, executives at Universal responsible for this release, Soundgarden; please all give yourselves a good kick in the backside for ruining this incredible album.

Good people out there who love music, stick to your original 1994 CDs of Superunknown, the experience is much, much better. And if you are looking for the superior analogue experience then save up your coin (you won't need a lot more than the list price of this Super Deluxe set anyway) and find the German pressing that Willem Makee cut around 2004. It was from a tape copy of the analogue stereo master and is the only all analogue cut of Superunknown available. The new vinyl may be pressed very well at QRP but the mastering is the same as the CD if the downloadable vinyl rip files are any indication.

Link to original superior 1994 CD release on Amazon is right here - Superunknown

What a shame this project wasn't done with someone like Barry Diament from Soundkeeper Recordings. I just came across a great interview (search for "Audiostream Barry Diament" for the url) with Barry Diament talking about his illustrious career path and this bit really made me smile:

"By the mid-1990's I realized that many clients were starting to evaluate my work using the level meters instead of the loudspeakers. At this point, I had to stop and ask myself just what I sought to accomplish as an audio engineer. Now, I enjoy loudness when it is appropriate but in my experience, if you want to shake the walls with AC/DC (or with Mahler), the best way to achieve this is with the playback volume control. Any other way, such as arbitrarily increasing the level on the recording itself involves a host of sonic trade-offs. First among them, is the sense of Life that comes from musical dynamics. Since my goals as an engineer are sourced in my love of music, I didn't want to participate in the ongoing Loudness Wars. All the truly great sounding records and CDs in my collection had much lower average levels than what the majors were releasing. I wanted to preserve all the musical Life in every source I mastered too and never used compression myself. While some say it increases "punch", the sonic evidence tells a quite different story. Besides, how does one increase punch by reducing dynamics, where the punch "lives"? So, I started accepting only those jobs where the client's prime interest was the musical presentation and the preservation of musical dynamics."
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


95 of 109 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the best, October 20, 2001
By 
Wheelchair Assassin (The Great Concavity) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
I've listened to lots of music, and "Superunknown" doubtlessly stands as arguably the best album I have ever heard. Visionary, perfectly executed and technically impeccable, Soundgarden set the standard for dark hard rock with this one. I can't really think of a place to start in praising this album, but Chris Cornell's vocals are as good a place as any. From the hushed tones of "Fell on Black Days" to the cathartic wailing of tunes like "My Wave" and the propulsive singing of "Fourth of July," Cornell can simply do it all. His dark, churning, guitar riffs, aided by Kim Thayil's soaring, distorted solos, complete the powerful atmosphere of these songs. Add in Matt Cameron's nimble and inventive drumwork and the result is a musical masterpiece. The variety of this album is also noteworthy, as it mixes hard rockers like the opening double shot of "Let Me Drown" and "My Wave" with slower, more melodic numbers like the hits "Fell on Black Days" and "The Day I Tried To Live." The megahit "Black Hole Sun," while a strong song, is easily the worst track on the album, with the exception of the filler track "Half." "Superunknown" boasts all that serious music fans could possibly want, from creativity to technical precision to complex arrangements to a truly masterful and powerful overall vocal performance from Chris Cornell. A masterpiece in every sense of the word.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


55 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Soundgarden's greatest album, February 14, 2006
By 
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
While Nirvana brought "grunge" and alternative rock to the mainstream, it was Soundgarden, along with Mudhoney and Green River (the precursor to Mudhoney) that, along with others, helped create the "grunge" sound. The band spent much of the 80s playing to enthusiastic audiences and building up a fan base. The band's early work, like "Screaming Life" (1987) and "Ultramega OK" (1988) saw a real Sabbath and Stooges influence, and while this influence remained, the band started to get a more refined and metallic edge as they progressed, with "Louder than Love" (1989) and "Badmoterfinger" (1991). In the spring of 1994, at the twilight of the Seattle grunge era, Soundgarden unleashed what would be their masterpiece "Superunknown."

To the general, fickle public that followed whatever was the flavor-of-the-week, Soundgarden's 1994 smash album "Superunknown" may have seemed to come out of left-field. While Soundgarden's pervious, top-40 album "Badmoterfinger" (1991) as well as a high profile tour with Guns N' Roses and props from Kurt Cobain may have put the band firmly on the map, it was "Superunknown" that made Soundgarden one of rock's premier bands of the 90s.

"Superunknown" takes up where "Badmoterfinger" left off, but "Superunknown" is less metallic, and there is a greater focus on melody with a noticeable Beatles influence present. In addition, the scope of the band's sound is expanded with the appearance of guest musicians (cello, viola, piano). While some fans of the band's earlier work may have perceived Soundgarden becoming more "commercial" or loosing their edge, this isn't really a fair argument. "Superunknown" was really the next logical step for Soundgarden to take as it saw the band mature and branch out artistically, without loosing its edge.

Guitarist Kim Thayil is one of rock's more underrated guitar players. Creating riffs that are heavy but melodic; he is equal parts George Harrison and Tony Iommi. Singer Chris Cornell, widely recognized as one of rock's great vocalists, could belt out the songs with pure, unadulterated emotion, without overdoing it, and leave a lasting impression. Ben Shepard (bass) and Matt Cameron (drums) provided an exciting and dynamic rhythm section that was several cuts above average (they also contributed to the songwriting as well).

The opening "Let Me Drown" sounds a bit like an updated version of Sabbath's "The Mob Rules," and gets the album off to a breakneck start. The subtle piano adds an interesting and unexpected touch. One of the album's big hits and a modern-rock radio staple, the infectious "My Wave" is heavily groove oriented and melodic. The gloomy "Fell on Black Days" is harrowing without indulging in self-pity. The album only gets bleaker with the sluggish "Mailman," as Cornell sings in almost a whimper "I know I'm headed for the bottom." The meaning of the hard-hitting title-track "Superunknown" is rather obscure, which adds a bit of mystery to the album without coming off as pretentious. The album takes a bit of a left-turn with the George Harrison-esque; Eastern flavored "Head Down," which is an interesting and captivating change of pace. The album's biggest hit and centerpiece "Black Hole Sun" stands as one of the most memorable songs (and videos) of the 1990s. Gloomy, but not hopeless and equal parts Sabbath and the Beatles, "Black Hole Sun" epitomizes the feeling of the disenchanted youth of the 1990s. "Spoonman," the song that introduced the band to the masses is based on a street performer, who performs with spoons (and plays them on this song). "Limo Wreck" sounds a bit like "Mailman," with its heavy plodding Sabbath riff. But the song truly shines when Cornell belts out the song's title, for a fully satisfying climax. "The Day I Tried to Live" depicts the sadness one feels when attempts to venture out of ones shell to find happiness are not fulfilled. "Kickstand" is a very short, but sweet, ballsy rocker. "Fresh Tendrils" is an above-average, by-the-numbers rocker, but too good to be labeled "filler." Probably the album's bleakest, most menacing song, "4th of July" grinds and slugs along, but is captivating and thus never tedious. The album throws the listener a curve-ball with violas and cellos and World-Beat trimmings with "Half." While the title of the closing track "Like Suicide" may lead one to believe it's just another mid-90s clichéd "woe-is-me" song, "Like Suicide" actually offers sympathy and understanding to someone battling depression. Over seven minutes in length and slow-paced, it would be easy for this song to get tiresome, but it doesn't.

Over 70 minutes in length, "Superunknown" is a long listen. Most albums of this length have a lot of filler, but "Superunknown" never suffers from this problem. "Superunknown" keeps the listener intrigued and interested all the way though. While many of the album's themes are dark and depressing, this album somehow isn't draining. Beneath the despair, there is hope.

I remember buying this album in the early summer of 1994, just as my tenure at Jr. High School ended. It was such a great time for music; Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, Nirvana (Cobain had only recently died), Rage Against the Machine, Hole...it was an exciting time and years before the likes of Fred Durst, Linkin Park and Creed...

While Pearl Jam and Nirvana are given a lion's share of the glory, Soundgarden should also be remembered as one of the best bands from the 90s. While it has been, as of this writing, almost twelve years since this album's release (God, I'm old) it is still too early to determine Soundgarden's legacy. Hopefully, ten years from now, kids will discover "Superunknown," the way the kids of my generation discovered Sabbath in the 1990s.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It doesn't get any better than this, October 8, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
There are so many great tracks on this album, I couldn't even mention them all. One of the truly front to back albums ever made, Superunknown may only be rivaled in strength by Pearl Jam's Ten. Of course, the radio songs like Black Hole Sun, My Wave, and Spoonman, are great, but Soundgarden's real greatness is shown in some of its lesser known tracks. Shepard's distorted lyrics in Half are simply ominous, while Cornell provides the listener with dreadful pleasure in Limo Wreck, Fell on Black Days and The Day I tried to Live. Like Suicide, the final track, is perhaps the most disturbing song of all, and makes one wonder what goes through Chris Cornell's mind when he's all alone. But if there's one song to play over and again, its the self-flagellating Fresh Tendrils, which moves with a taut rage that only Soundgarden could deliver. If you haven't bought this album, you're missing out on a rare and powerful musical experience that comes around more seldom than does Halley's Comet.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Dark Masterpiece, August 31, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
Whoa. If you're in a good, optimistic mood and you want to stay that way, don't listen to this album. You'll be running for the razors in no time. Fortunately, Soundgarden fans like myself recognize the unmistakable brilliance of Cornell's pitch-black lyrics, Thayil's guitaring genius, Shepherd's throbbing bass and Cameron's fantastically tight drumming. All are truly on show in this, their best album, a balance between the best elements of the faster, harder Badmotorfinger and the slightly more mellow Down On The Upside.
Forget the popular tracks "Black Hole Sun" and "Spoonman", the true highlights of this album include "Let Me Drown", "My Wave", "Superunknown", "Limo Wreck", "The Day I Tried To Live", "Fresh Tendrils" and the darkly brilliant "Head Down". Awash with cynical lyrics and complex, crashing guitars, there is no better way to experience the music of one of the best and most unique bands of the 90's.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A timeless classic of 90's rock., March 29, 2005
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
I don't know why, but I've been revisiting the early 90's grunge bands quite a lot here lately. I guess it's because with the rise of the experimental indie rock bands becoming more popular (which I've been very much enjoying), it's reminded me of the days when you could turn on the radio and actually hear something GOOD. But anyway, "Superunknown" is one of those albums that has stood the test of time, and then some. It is, quite simply, one of the best and most creative hard rock albums of all time.

Everything just really came together here. Maturing from the more straight-forward hard rock of previous releases, adding more texture, melody, and diversity, it is here that the band's sound truly reached its peak. Chris Cornell's soaring, bluesy vocals, Kim Thayil's sludgy guitar attack, and Matt Cameron's pounding drums all shine to their fullest.

At 70 minutes in length, this album never misses a step. From the energetic hard rock of "Let Me Drown" and the title track, to the hypnotic sludgy grooves of "Mailman" and "4th of July", this is an album that keeps you on your toes. It is also chock full of solid radio singles, which are still regular staples in rock radio today. "My Wave" and "Fell on Black Days" are just irresistably catchy, "Black Hole Sun" and "The Day I Tried to Live" are a bit softer, but still super-catchy, and "Spoonman", with its bizarre lyrics, super-infectious riff, and sweet drum solo, is nothing short of a classic.

The album wanders into somewhat bizarre territory, with "Fresh Tendrils", "Head Down", and "Half". These songs have somewhat unorthodox melodies, and may take a few listens to grow on you, but they're very cool. The slow, bluesy "Like Suicide" concludes the album, with about the finest finish you could ask for.

All in all, this is a perfect, and absolutely essential album. Any serious music fan, or just general lover of great rock and roll can't afford to be without it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definition of an "instant classic", October 13, 2000
By 
"willison101" (University, Mississippi United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
Where can you begin to review such a wonderfully depressing album? Chris Cornell has never sounded more confident in his vocal abilities and the band as a whole has never sounded so together. The writing shows how the band hit their peak with songs like "Limo Wreck" and "Fell on Black Days". This album blew away all the sterotypes of the "grunge" scene and allowed Soundgarden to move to the forefront of the rock scene at least for a little while. A magnificent achievement in rock music that deserves the title "instant classic".
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quintessential Grunge......., December 1, 2003
By 
Nadia555 (Sydney, NSW Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
"Superunknown" is Soundgarden's full-blown masterpiece. Picking highlights is difficult, because every single track is a gem in its own right, giving this album a consistency that is seldom found on any album of any genre. My personal favourite is the sludge-grunge of "Mailman", which showcases Chris Cornell's unique vocals at their very best. But there are plenty more stunners here, from the self-deprecation of "Fell on Black Days", the eerie psychedelia of "Black Hole Sun", to the apocalyptic "4th of July". Every other song has its merits too, to the point where the album is almost flawless.
Kim Thayil's riffs are brilliant on Superunknown and background the passionate, anguished wails of Cornell to great effect. The vocals and instrumentation here are impeccable, as are the cryptic lyrics, which deal with depression, misanthropy, nihilism and darkness in it's myriad forms, with an intellectual sensibility that is rarely found on modern rock records.
The album closes with the haunting ballad "Like Suicide", which fits nicely with the dark theme maintained throughout the album. This album is one of my personal all-time favourites, and is certainly recommended to fans of the Seattle grunge sound.
Note : some versions of Superunknown come with the bonus track "She Likes Surprises", which is worth seeking.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ridiculous essay on Superunknown I did once., March 2, 2004
By 
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
1994 was a dark period for rock music. Nirvana front man Kurt Cobain had been found dead that April, presumably from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Because of this incident, many would suppose that the grunge rock dynasty would be brought to a halt. In the next couple of years, such would be the case, but not before fellow Seattle rock titans Soundgarden would release their masterpiece, Superunknown in March of 1994. While the album was released before Cobain's death, the album didn't really take off until summer of that year, with the release of the single "Black Hole Sun". Soundgarden had been together since 1984, and releasing records since 1987, and even achieved minor success with those records in between, but this record was truly the most successful. This seeming swan song for grunge (although the group would release another album in 1996, before becoming defunct the following year) boasted 15 tracks, and over 70 minutes worth of music, without a single weak track. Each track is different from the other, showcasing innovation that hasn't been seen since Zeppelin's mid-career albums. Ultimately, the group really hit the nail on the head with this recording, which simultaneously brought them commercial success.
The first track, "Let Me Drown", kicks off the album with muscular riff-heavy rock. Chris Cornell's vocals become more emphatic as it switches from the verse to the chorus, which aids in "pumping you up" for the rest of this record. His vocals seem, for the first time in his career, totally floating over the band, rather than just melding with the band, thus the hooks in his vocals really comes out strong. The next track, "My Wave", was a minor hit on radio (whose highest position was somewhere around number 18 on modern rock charts). The main riff, in a strange guitar tuning, gives a bizarre tone to the instrument, which is also mixed with some wah-wah bass moves in the song's bridge. "Fell on Black Days", the following track, was a dark, pseudo-ballad that also made its way to radio. Chris's vocals seem pretty low-register and melancholy for most of the song, until the end, when his signature scream (which never before felt so dramatic) carries the song out until the end. This particular track seems to be one of the favorites among Soundgarden fans.
The group has often been described as the perfect combination of the dark, plodding riffs of Black Sabbath and the versatility of Led Zeppelin. Never before has this marriage become so obvious than in track 4, "Mailman". The song begins as a detuned, plodding dirge (as it remains throughout the song), with such "uplifting" lyrics as "I'm the dirt beneath your feet/The most important fool you forgot to see". Led Zeppelin's influence begins to come through with the addition of the spooky Mellotron strings, bringing an eerie resonance that has rarely been heard since the mid-70's. The title track of "Superunknown" comes next, which more or less shows an epic, Zeppelin-like feel. The track features twangy, psychedelic riffs, along with some interesting percussion parts in the bridge section. Following this song is the sweeping, acoustic-driven epic "Head Down". Also owing a great deal to Led Zeppelin's sound, the track is quite enjoyable nonetheless, although one may argue that it is a bit repetitive (but, repetition of a great riff is better than repeating a horrible one!). This is of course followed by the group's most famous song, "Black Hole Sun". Easily the anthem for the summer of 1994, Soundgarden enjoyed their biggest hit with this track, and rightfully so. The track is surprisingly innovative for such a popular song, with hints of psychedelia in the verse, as well as the bridge/solo, along with a muscular riff in the choruses. Another surprise is the fact that from what I remember, the song was never edited from its 5 minute length. The song also had one of their most bizarre music videos for this track, which also surprisingly got heavy play on MTV (but I guarantee such would not be the case today). "Black Hole Sun" was followed by yet another hit for Soundgarden, "Spoonman", bringing us to track 8. "Spoonman" was actually the first single to be released off of Superunknown, about a month before it was released. Originally written for Cameron Crowe's Seattle-based movie "Singles"(which featured Soundgarden playing live), the song was revamped, with a guy playing spoons during the bridge. The vibe of the song was similar to that of The Who's "Magic Bus", as most of Soundgarden's music hearkens to the 60's and 70's.
Now at track 9, about half-way through the album, we arrive at "Limo Wreck", one of my personal favorites. This song features beautifully placed guitar harmonics, a somewhat slow 9/8 time signature feel, and an overall gloomy tone. It also features some great lyrics on Chris's behalf: "Swallowing rivers belongs to the sea/When the whole thing washes away, don't run to me." Most of the song has this similar structure of lyrics. "The Day I Tried to Live" comes next, which was yet another single to be released from this record. Yet another pseudo-ballad, this one here seems to be the centerpiece of the album. It is anthemic, almost in an R&B sense, with Chris's vocals yet again waiting until the end to really bring the high-register screams out, which seems to end on an uplifting note. Following this one is the only real song that seems to show Soundgarden's punk influences, "Kickstand". The shortest song on the record (only about 1 ˝ minutes long), it is no less innovative. It seems to meld Led Zeppelin with The Stooges, and ends almost as abruptly as it starts. "Fresh Tendrils" showcases some funky clavinet (Physical Graffiti anyone?), although it does not particularly work with the sound this track was going for. It is still a strong track, and certainly worth a listen. "4th of July" is by far one of Soundgarden's spookiest, and darkest tracks. It is seriously Soundgarden's one true doom metal number, with detuned riffs, a plodding drum beat, and lyrics speaking of the apocalypse (brought about brilliantly, as the narrator thought the explosions were because it was the 4th of July). Following this is a strange, folky track called "Half". This features vocals completely by bassist Ben Shepard, playing a twangy mandolin part. Strings are also recorded in the mix, making the soundscape even more epic (despite its short length). Finally, we arrive at track 15, "Like Suicide". Starting off very light, the song does not kick into full gear until around the second verse, before really bringing it home at the very end, in full Soundgarden fashion. Its seven minute length rounds out the record, as it is truly an end to an incredible record.
Popular rock music has not seen much innovation like this since the release of Superunknown. Most great records released since then have been buried by the more "commercial" ones, which has unfortunately gotten worse in the past few years with the rising popularity of cookie-cutter, overly produced records, which give no real substance or innovation to music. It's hard to believe that a record that could be compared to "Houses of the Holy" or "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" was released only 10 years ago, and that so much has changed in the music world as well. Superunknown is truly a testament to how much has changed in popular music over the past 10 years. However, as the record took awhile for me to fully appreciate, I am sure the rock world will soon recognize its glory in the next 10 years, as the same was done for Led Zeppelin's and Black Sabbath's records. As a musician myself, it would be my dream to carry on the torch that these bands have carried, being able to be ground-breaking, and achieve success simultaneously.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Grunge Album of All Time, May 20, 2000
By 
This review is from: Superunknown (Audio CD)
SUPERUNKNOWN captures Soundgarden, grunge, and (to my ears) all rock music at its best. The album starts off with "Let Me Drown", which has the low, sludgy riffs and high-pitched vocals that made BADMOTORFINGER a classic. The excellent "My Wave" switches from pounding, three-chord verses to a bright, psychedelic chorus. The gloomy, contemplative "Fell on Black Days" is an instant classic. "Mailman" is in the vein of Black Sabbath, while "Superunkown" is reminiscent of Led Zeppelin. "Head Down" is an acoustic-based jam/song with ethereal harmonies and strange lyrics. If you haven't heard the Beatlesque ballad "Black Hole Sun", bow your sorry head in shame. The campy "Spoonman" is dumb yet incredible. On "Limo Wreck", Chris Cornell sings distrubing lyrics over an ominous waltz beat, and "The Day I Tried to Live" is a complex prog-rock epic. The one-minute punk song "Kickstand" is the worst track, but still enjoyable. "Fresh Tendrils" has some awesome guitar riffs. The plodding, apocalyptic "4th of July" is one of the creepiest songs ever recorded. "Half" is the strangest track, like a rock band playing Middle Eastern music. But the best song is the seven-minute closer, "Like Suicide". With its beautiful guitar lines, emotional vocals, and sad, yearning lyrics, "Like Suicide" will make you cry or give you chills. Buy this Cd for a life-changing experience.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 242 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Search these reviews only
Rate and Discover Movies
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.