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Pearl Jam

4.2 out of 5 stars 403 customer reviews

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Audio CD, May 2, 2006
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  • Interview: Amazon.com caught up with Pearl Jam guitarist Stone Gossard at the band's rehearsal studio in Seattle to talk about the new album. Listen now (requires Windows Media Player).

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  • • An Amazon.com Best Music of 2006 selection.

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

With over 65 million albums sold, Pearl Jam returns with their first studio record in four years. 'World Wide Suicide' is the lead single and video (directed by Danny Clinch) from the album impacting prior to release date. The band will be touring the globe through July 2006 in support of the new album.


If its debut album 15 years ago made Pearl Jam apprehensive with success, the Seattle quintet better buckle in for a return to eminence. On its eighth studio release--and first since 2002--the band socks away the adventurous experimentation that dogged some of its most recent records to investigate a post-September 11, war-ravaged world overflowing with urgency and significance. "It's the same everyday in a hell manmade/What can be saved, and who will be left to hold her?" lead singer Eddie Vedder wonders in "World Wide Suicide," one of several contemptuous rants on the Bush administration. Yet the album's spark is more than political. Songs like "Life Wasted," "Comatose" and "Big Wave" embrace the garage-rock past, as guitarists Mike McCready and Stone Gossard play off each other with the primal lucidity of a decade ago and drummer Matt Cameron, one of rock's best, adds raw backing vocals to Vedder's polished craft. But Pearl Jam also turns up some of its most harmonious works since "Daughter," including "Marker in the Sand," with its radio-ready chorus, the tuneful "Parachutes" paced by Gossard's divine strumming, and the burning narrative and Urge Overkill punch of "Umemployable." Finally Vedder pleads for a lover's return in "Come Back," a keyboard-soaked love song complete with a chilling Gossard solo. It's got a soulfulness that begs for Sam Cooke to sing it and an originality that shows that a vibrant and cocksure Pearl Jam is back in town--and ready to retake the world. --Scott Holter

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 2, 2006)
  • Original Release Date: May 2, 2006
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Legacy
  • Run Time: 49 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (403 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #102,303 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By M. Mayer III on May 2, 2006
Format: Audio CD
To start off, many people say this is a comeback album but the truth is they never went anywhere to comeback to. They've always been a 'classic rock' band at the core with influences such as The Who, Led Zeppelin, The Buzzcocks, among others.

I'll start off with the cover, which is a blue gradient background with an avocado. The avocado can symbolize many things since it has a unique pit. On the inside of this album you see that uniqueness with the artwork. Each song has two pages, one of the lyrics and the other a picture of a face zombiefied or altered in some way. The pictures are rather good and with the exception of the last picture which has Eddie's head covered in blood amidst the rest of the band members' heads also covered in various gory ways. It's no doubt a disturbing picture but you get the impression this CD isn't for the faint of heart. Most songs have a strong message about what's going on in the world from the war on Iraq to love ones lost.

I can say my political views are not the same as Pearl Jam's but it didn't stop me from enjoying the music. That's because the lyrics are done in a tasteful enough way to not alienate fans entirely but still get their message across. That's really the best way to do things IMO and Ed's lyrics shine. He's acknowledged he's gotten away from the story telling his lyrics used to have in earlier work and he comes back to that here.

To start off, Life Wasted is a strong rocking sound to kick off the album. The chorus can and probably will get stuck in your head after a few listens. What I love the most is Mike's guitar solo near the end. It's subtle enough to where you may not pick it up on the first few listens unless you're looking for it but once you recognize it the song feels much stronger.
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Format: Audio CD
It totally blows my mind that people are still whining about how Pearl Jam no longer sound like they did on Ten. Well that was only fifteen years and eight albums ago. (Plus two compilations and about 150 live albums.) Well here's a new flash, genius – the only Pearl Jam album that sounds like Ten is Ten. They quickly left the power grunge behind and turned to a garage/classic rock focus, while leaving the flannel kids stuck in a 1991 time warp. Besides, they're in their forties now, and long ago grew bored with what they were doing in their mid-twenties. For the rest of us who can appreciate the developing talent and vision of serious musicians, not to mention the passage of time, Pearl Jam has now delivered the strongest of their latter-day "mature" albums.

After a few rather dreary albums, Pearl Jam seems to have gotten their spark back, and maybe the critics are right in crediting the current political situation. The best rockers on this album, such as "Life Wasted", "Comatose," and "Severed Hand" have a crunch that hasn't been heard since No Code. Even a few of the slow-burners, especially "Gone" and "Inside Job" (which features the first-ever lyrics from Mike McCready) have a sense of menace that hasn't been present in Pearl Jam's ballads since – you guessed it – Ten. And believe it or not, Eddie Vedder is still developing as a singer and lyricist, as he finds more and more subtle ways to convey every emotion from righteous anger to solemn empathy. This new album is a return to form that will satisfy serious Pearl Jam fans and lovers of real rock. There's not an ounce of grunge here – and there shouldn't be. [~doomsdayer520~]
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Format: Audio CD
It's quite possible that Pearl Jam is more revered in retrospect than for their musical offerings from the last 5-6 years. Their name is legendary. And their initial 2-3 albums are considered classics. But what have they done lately that hasn't sounded tired and stale?

Even though I'd been burned by PJ's albums in the past, I took a chance on this new one, simply titled Pearl Jam.

Wow. Am I glad I did. Pearl Jam has been reborn!

This album sounds fresh, alive and -- dare I say it? -- vital. They retained their trademark garage band sound and Eddie's sometimes mumbly (but powerful) baritone. But there are melodies and hooks on this album that are infectious. And the playing sounds like a Pearl Jam I haven't heard in a long, long time. It's energetic and meaty.

The album kicks off with the guitar-heavy, toe tapping "Life Wasted," which sports typical Pearl Jam chord progressions but with more oomph behind them.

"World Wide Suicide," the next track, features a sound and energy reminiscent of anything off Vs. or their debut CD (1993 and 1991, respectively).

"Comatose" begins with a Tom Petty-like guitar riff and then explodes in Eddie's growling vocal and bashing, punk-like guitars that would make the Sex Pistols proud.

One of my favorite tracks follows "Comatose": "Severed Hand," which begins with swirling, mysterious-sounding backward-played guitar noodlings before turning into another free-for-all garage band extravaganza.

"Parachutes," a Beatle-esque song featuring acoustic guitar, a jaunty beat and tight vocal arrangements, is a nice change of pace after so many balls-out tracks.

"Unemployable," the next track, is a great riff. Very catchy and upbeat. It reminds me of R.E.M.
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