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Pearl Jam

Pearl Jam

April 27, 2006
4.2 out of 5 stars 403 customer reviews

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Pearl Jam
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Product Details

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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