Thursday, January 26, 2023

Jeff Ament Solo & Deaf Charlie Coming in 2023?


Jeff Ament's friends have been active in social media this month, low-key announcing upcoming projects.

A couple of weeks ago, the Deaf Charlie (Jeff's COVID collaboration project with John Wicks) Instagram account posted that their debut album, DC, has wrapped and been sent for vinyl pressing.


And last night, Richard Stuverud, long time Ament contributor posted that they've wrapped 10 new Jeff solo songs in San Diego.


Monday, January 9, 2023

Two Shows by Painted Shield


 This March, we'll finally be getting the live debut of Painted Shield.  They'll be playing two nights at the Clock-Out Lounge in Seattle, March 10th and March 11th.  The first show is sold out, but the second show goes on sale tomorrow at 10am PT tomorrow (Tuesday).

Friday, December 30, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #1

 #1, EARTHLING


It was late 2021 when we first learned that Eddie Vedder had been working on a solo album.  Our first chance to hear "Earthling" was a song called Long Way, that called back to Tom Petty's sound (hardly a surprise after hearing Ed's cover of Wild Flowers on the 2017 Fan Club Single).  It was nearly Valentine's Day 2022 before it dropped, and, like Ed's two previous albums, it was a shocking departure from both Pearl Jam and his previous albums.

Ed let his influences from Petty, the Beatles, and Springsteen loose, pays tribute to his lost friends, and brings a host of guest stars to the table, Stevie Wonder, Elton John, Ringo Star, and even his own, late father, Edward Severson Jr., through a recording passed down to Ed from a friend.  This may have been the truest Ed we've ever gotten even if he shared songwriting credits with his co-collaborators, Andrew Watt and Josh Klinghoffer.

The album was so amazing, we had to break our review into two parts.  Each time we hear from Ed, and Ed alone, we see slight shifts in the music of Pearl Jam, and since Stone Gossard tells us that they may be working on twelve album (possibly with Andrew Watt?), we may be in for some amazing things in the future.




Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #2

 #2, DAVE KRUSEN RETURNS TO PEARL JAM

Credit: PearlJam.com

This is not just a story about Dave Krusen.  This is a story about Matt Cameron, who came down with COVID-19 just before Pearl Jam's two shows in Oakland.  It's a story about Richard Stuverud, friend of Jeff Ament, who stepped in to play drums for three shows in Oakland and Fresno.  It's a story about Josh Klinghoffer, who also picked up drums, leading to a drum battle between he and Stuverud during the performance of W.M.A. on night two in Oakland.  It's a story about Josh Arroyo, who was just a fan in the audience wearing a shirt with the names off all the Pearl Jam drummers, which got him on stage to play drums for show closer, Yellow Ledbetter.

We love all of that and hope to see Josh back in 2023, but our particular highlight of the tour was having Dave Krusen back behind the set for all of our Ten-era favorites in Fresno.  If we can't have Matt Cameron, and we can't have Jimmy Shoaf, Dave Krusen is an amazing and exciting third choice.  For a brief window of time, we got to have Pearl Jam, as Pearl Jam was originally formed, and it couldn't have been a better show.

We could have had two more amazing shows, rumor had it that Jack Irons was trying to get to California, if COVID-19 had not spread further into the band, cutting them down before end of that leg of the tour.


Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #3

 #3, UNDER THE BANNER OF HEAVEN


We got an amazing surprise in May when Jeff Ament announced that he was working with Josh Klinghoffer, long time friend, John Wicks, and Gigaton producer, Josh Evans to score the FX adaptation of John Krakauer's book, Under the Banner of Heaven.

The results were some of the most chilling, atmospheric, and experimental pieces we've heard since Master/Slave opened Ten.  Each episode of the show was closed with one of their creations, which quickly found their way onto YouTube.

If we're lucky, next year we'll be announcing a vinyl release so we can bring these amazing songs home with us.


Monday, December 26, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #4

 #4, THE "GIGATON" TOUR


Though it was filled with ups and downs, it's hard to be sad about Pearl Jam finally hitting the road for a proper tour in 2022.  Officially, this was the Gigaton Tour, but you'll find the band played a lot less of that album than you would expect from a supporting tour.  Since the album was already two years old when the tour started, that's understandable.  Still, given reception from fans, you can expect Dance of the ClairvoyantsWho Ever Said, and Quick Escape to be regular occurrences in playlists from here on out.

What a roller coaster!  The tour seemed held together with duct tape and wire though California while COVID swept through the band until it eventually forced cancellations.  The band came back together in Europe building up to some amazing shows in the UK before Ed wrecked his voice in France.  Do we comment on the fact that climate change destroyed the tour that was supporting an album themed around climate change?

Coming back to North America, Pearl Jam introduced a 5-song slow intro to their shows that blew fans' minds and dusted off rarities like Other Side, Yellow Moon, Wash, and Sleight of Hand.  They battled technical difficulties at a historic show at the Apollo in New York, and played a show outside Philadelphia that could have almost occurred in 1995, shaking off modern hits for a deep dive into the catalog.

Even as they show signs of age with shorter sets, there was enough innovation this year to keep us salivating for a 2023 Tour!

Sunday, December 25, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #5

 #5, 3RD SECRET


In April, we found out that Matt Cameron had been working with former Nirvana bassist, Krist Novoselić, Soundgarden's Kim Thayil, guitarist Bobba Dupree of Void, Jillian Raye of Giants in the Trees, and Jennifer Johnson to form the band 3rd Secret.  Their debut album has, to date, only been available via streaming sources, but it's been an amazing demonstration of where "grunge" artists find themselves today.


Thursday, December 22, 2022

Happy Birthday, Eddie Vedder!

 

Credit: Steve Sherman

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #6

 #6, PAINTED SHIELD 2

We got our first taste of Painted Shield's sophomore effort back in the summer of 2021, but it wasn't until May this year that the full album got to us.  With Mason Jennings on vocals their music sounds nothing like Pearl Jam, and with the elevation of Brittany Davis to vocals on nearly half of this album, Painted Shield blew our minds this year more than ever.

We can't wait to see them live in March at SXSW!




Wednesday, December 21, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #7

 #7, REARVIEWMIRROR AND LIVE ON TWO LEGS


This year we were excited to get two Pearl Jam compilations reissued.  First, and possibly most exciting, Live on Two Legs got a Record Store Day release on clear vinyl.  This was the first time that album was available on vinyl in almost 25 years.  If you can find a copy in your local record store bins, don't hesitate, it contains some of the greatest Pearl Jam performances to date.

The other reissue was a new release of Rearviewmirror: Greatest Hits 1991-2003.  Previously release in 2004 as a 4-LP set, the album has now been split into two volumes, Volume 1 (the "Up" side), with fast paced rockers, and Volume 2 (the "Down" side), with slower songs.  Both volumes are still available as Walmart exclusives on either black vinyl or with a colored vinyl option.

Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #8

 #8, VIC THEATRE ON VINYL


A tough decision to include in our list, since this was one of the first Vault releases Pearl Jam ever offered, but when they offered it back in 2012, you could only get it on CD or via digital download.  Pearl Jam seems to be reaching back and trying to fill holes in their collection.  And so, in 2022, they made the Vic Threatre from August 2007 available on vinyl for the first time.

Even though we've seen this one before, it's definitely exciting to have it on vinyl (or, at least, we will when it eventually ships).  Here's hoping 2023 brings us Vault #12.

Monday, December 19, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #9

 #9, LONG ROAD BY STEVEN HYDEN


Just as most of us were coming off of the high of following Pearl Jam's tour around the world, music journalist, Steven Hyden, was there with his new book Long Road: Pearl Jam and the Soundtrack of a Generation, chronicling for us exactly how Pearl Jam shaped our lives and why were are still packing venues where they play.

Whether you are new to Pearl Jam or you've had bootleg tapes since the 90's, we recommend reading our review of the book and picking up a copy for yourself or for a Christmas gift.

Sunday, December 18, 2022

Top Ten Pearl Jam Moments of 2022, #10

 #10, TOUR CANCELLATIONS

It appears as though Pearl Jam ceased sales of their custom masks a little to early.  Though it wasn't all caused by COVID, and it wasn't as extensive as 2020, show cancellation continued to plague Pearl Jam in 2022.

Problems started with Sacramento and Las Vegas when Jeff Ament came down with COVID-19 during the first leg of Pearl Jam's North American Tour.  They had already been using fill in drummers (more on that later), but the loss of a bassist was too much.

Then, air pollution from wildfires in France damaged Eddie's vocal cords, leading to the loss of three shows in a row from the European leg, Vienna, Prague, and one of the Amsterdam shows.

Although leg two of the North American tour stayed intact, Eddie and Painted Shield were forced to cancel the Encore weekend of the Ohana Festival due to lack of interest.

2022 was definitely the return of the Pearl Jam Tour, but it was also a year of what could have been.