Monday, September 21, 2009

Pearl Jam - Backspacer Review

Released exclusively through iTunes and Target, Pearl Jam has started a new chapter, by leaving their record label and putting Backspacer out independently. The other cool thing they did is they give you a link to get two free live convert downloads. So be sure to load the CD to iTunes or buy it at iTunes and put it in the player and click on the CD cover and it will bring you up to a web link where you can click on the pictures. Check them all out, but the train in the upper left will link you to choose from 2 of 11 live shows. Hint - if you have multiple email addresses, you can register on each one and get more free live shows! Also on iTunes they give you a free video of The Fixer as well as a 10 minute making of the CD movie that's really neat. I would highly recommend checking both of those out even if you don't own an iPod.

The first few songs really rock you out pretty good in typical Pearl Jam style. I have to say I'm really impressed with the new CD and the style in which they recorded this one. Check out the iTunes video for sure just to get a glimpse it's well worth it.

Gonna See My Friend starts you off with a jamming tune and keeps going through Got Some and The Fixer. All of them have that Pearl Jam feel to them and are just good fun tunes to listen to.

Just Breathe slows it down, but really is an awesome song. It shows the diversity of the band with their ability to change it up. The guitar work is nice as well as the backing musicians that play on it. This one is my favorite on the CD.

Amongst the Wave is another nice song that's a little on the slower side, but makes me think of my days hanging out on the beaches of Southern California. Just the line "riding high amongst the waves" puts me back in my SoCal days and this is sort of a ballad type song in a way, that really finished off pretty strong.

Unknown Thoughts again starts you out with a little guitar and Eddie singing and build up with some piano and drums kicking in along as it rolls. Then Eddie starts getting into it. It really shows his passion in his voice and again is a nice fit to the last couple of songs and gels well.

Now we kick it back to Supersonic that gets the feet thumping and gives you a nice classic jam. Not sure who to compare it to, but it really just keeps going and is a nice tune with some good guitar solos in it.

Slowing it back down a bit with Speed of Sound you get a nice little slow ballady type song. Somewhat Neil Youngish to me, but could also be just a good PJ slow one. Force of Nature makes you think Joe Satriani or guitar wizard is ready to jam one out and then you hear Eddie and it kicks in to a regular PJ standard song. It Has nice guitar work through it and jams out nicely.

The End finishes the Cd off really nice. A good mellow tune with a start of guitar and Eddie and adds some good backing strings along it. You really hear how nice Eddie can sound as he has a symphony style backing. I bet he would do well singing Pearl Jam songs with a symphony in the back, that would be awesome.

I missed Eddie on the solo tour, but that's because no one seems to come to Kansas City much. Once in a while we get lucky. So I hope to sometime hear Eddie solo and even though I have seen Pearl Jam many times in the past 20 years, I would love to see them come to town as well. There are some great 2009 Bootleg shows for sale on their website for $9.99, check them out for sure. Chicago night two is really awesome. Go to and you will see them either in the store or just on the top page.

A really great CD. If I did give out stars on CDs this would get 5 for sure.

Track Listing:

1. Gonna See My Friend
2. Got Some
3. The Fixer
4. Johnny Guitar
5. Just Breathe
6. Amongst The Wave
7. Unthought Known
8. Supersonic
9. Speed Of Sound
10. Force Of Nature
11. The End

1 comment:

Angele Martin said...

There are very few things in life as rewarding as learning to play a musical instrument, and there are even fewer things as beautiful as an electric guitar. However, learning to play the guitar takes a lot of patience and can be very frustrating at times. While it's very important that you stick to some sort of structure if you want to make good progress, it's just as important that you learn an easy song every now and then so you don't feel like you're going nowhere slowly.