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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:20 am 
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Sgt. Crackpot wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
as an aside, I think present tense and inside job are basically trying to be the same song, although the former executes much better than the latter.

Inside Job seems much more reflective and singular to me. It's more about a person being the best version of themselves they can be. Present Tense seems like advice to the masses; more universal. And, yes, a fuck ton better.

To me, Present Tense is purely raw beauty and emotion. Inside Job in some ways has beauty, but there is no real emotion; it feels forced.

Interesting.

I feel like there is real beauty in it, but it's naive and (I hate to say it) shallow. I don't think it feels forced. It's genuine. It's just the kind of thing most of us figured out in high school. It's a lovely sentiment and I applaud the nudity of expression. But not all therapy needs to be recorded or used in an artistic outlet.

Inside Job, like Stip said once before, is the song proud pappa Vedder hangs on the fridge because he's proud of his boy Mike.


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:21 am 
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Sgt. Crackpot wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
as an aside, I think present tense and inside job are basically trying to be the same song, although the former executes much better than the latter.

Inside Job seems much more reflective and singular to me. It's more about a person being the best version of themselves they can be. Present Tense seems like advice to the masses; more universal. And, yes, a fuck ton better.

To me, Present Tense is purely raw beauty and emotion. Inside Job in some ways has beauty, but there is no real emotion; it feels forced.


again, the execution on present tense is much better (it's a far superior song), and joey is right that inside job is more personal (focused on the subject, rather than an audience). still, both songs have a somewhat similar arc to them (musically), and they both have the same 'learn to forgive yourself so you can live your life' message.

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:23 am 
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stip wrote:
Sgt. Crackpot wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
as an aside, I think present tense and inside job are basically trying to be the same song, although the former executes much better than the latter.

Inside Job seems much more reflective and singular to me. It's more about a person being the best version of themselves they can be. Present Tense seems like advice to the masses; more universal. And, yes, a fuck ton better.

To me, Present Tense is purely raw beauty and emotion. Inside Job in some ways has beauty, but there is no real emotion; it feels forced.


again, the execution on present tense is much better (it's a far superior song), and joey is right that inside job is more personal (focused on the subject, rather than an audience). still, both songs have a somewhat similar arc to them (musically), and they both have the same 'learn to forgive yourself so you can live your life' message.

But Present Tense goes to more interesting places musically and does so much more with less, I think.


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:26 am 
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durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
Sgt. Crackpot wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
as an aside, I think present tense and inside job are basically trying to be the same song, although the former executes much better than the latter.

Inside Job seems much more reflective and singular to me. It's more about a person being the best version of themselves they can be. Present Tense seems like advice to the masses; more universal. And, yes, a fuck ton better.

To me, Present Tense is purely raw beauty and emotion. Inside Job in some ways has beauty, but there is no real emotion; it feels forced.


again, the execution on present tense is much better (it's a far superior song), and joey is right that inside job is more personal (focused on the subject, rather than an audience). still, both songs have a somewhat similar arc to them (musically), and they both have the same 'learn to forgive yourself so you can live your life' message.

But Present Tense goes to more interesting places musically and does so much more with less, I think.


most definitely. But if there was one song in the catalog I would pair present tense with, it's inside job. that never occurred to me until I was writing up present tense.

Go listen to them back to back :)

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:28 am 
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stip wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
Sgt. Crackpot wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
as an aside, I think present tense and inside job are basically trying to be the same song, although the former executes much better than the latter.

Inside Job seems much more reflective and singular to me. It's more about a person being the best version of themselves they can be. Present Tense seems like advice to the masses; more universal. And, yes, a fuck ton better.

To me, Present Tense is purely raw beauty and emotion. Inside Job in some ways has beauty, but there is no real emotion; it feels forced.


again, the execution on present tense is much better (it's a far superior song), and joey is right that inside job is more personal (focused on the subject, rather than an audience). still, both songs have a somewhat similar arc to them (musically), and they both have the same 'learn to forgive yourself so you can live your life' message.

But Present Tense goes to more interesting places musically and does so much more with less, I think.


most definitely. But if there was one song in the catalog I would pair present tense with, it's inside job. that never occurred to me until I was writing up present tense.

Go listen to them back to back :)

I'll do that tomorrow. I'm not gonna get through my catalog relisten, anyway. I'm only on Insignificance right now.


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:35 am 
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stip wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
Sgt. Crackpot wrote:
durdencommatyler wrote:
stip wrote:
as an aside, I think present tense and inside job are basically trying to be the same song, although the former executes much better than the latter.

Inside Job seems much more reflective and singular to me. It's more about a person being the best version of themselves they can be. Present Tense seems like advice to the masses; more universal. And, yes, a fuck ton better.

To me, Present Tense is purely raw beauty and emotion. Inside Job in some ways has beauty, but there is no real emotion; it feels forced.


again, the execution on present tense is much better (it's a far superior song), and joey is right that inside job is more personal (focused on the subject, rather than an audience). still, both songs have a somewhat similar arc to them (musically), and they both have the same 'learn to forgive yourself so you can live your life' message.

But Present Tense goes to more interesting places musically and does so much more with less, I think.


most definitely. But if there was one song in the catalog I would pair present tense with, it's inside job. that never occurred to me until I was writing up present tense.

Go listen to them back to back :)

Duly noted. I'll give it a try.

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:40 am 
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report back here when you are done

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:50 am 
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stip wrote:
report back here when you are done

So demanding anymore. :shake:


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 3:51 am 
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stip wrote:
report back here when you are done

:| Y-Yes.. Sir.

Damn it. I forgot my balls.
:gomez: SIR, YES SIR!

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 5:31 am 
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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Red Mosquito
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 10:47 am 
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durdencommatyler wrote:
Red Mosquito is a bit of a fever dream, I think. It's inspired by the time Ed was bedridden by a terrible case of food poisoning.


I had thought it was written just after the Golden Gate show - "Looking back at it, it doesn't seem as intense as it was, but it was horrible. I just felt not human and looking back I should have got through that show somehow"

Because that show led to their popular demise he regrets that he didn't get through it: "If I had known then, what I know now".

The other thing I take from the song is the devil aspect and the idea that death is around the corner "just paying me, a little visit" - make the most of life.

It always annoys me (on headphones) that the guitar in the song is poorly mixed to the point of amateurism - Mike clearly played throughout the song and the guitar is faded in and out with little sensitivity. I think this may be an example of where Stone thinks they rushed the record a bit and the takes weren't as good as they should have been.

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Fri July 05, 2013 11:08 am 
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Sometimes those little imperfections are what give an album that little extra character. I often hear minor playing and mixing flaws in a lot of albums (not just PJ), and most of the time it doesn't bother me. It shows they're human.

I hate hearing an over polished, 'perfected' protools piece of shit music, because it usually sounds soulless.

This reminds me of reading about how the Foo Fighters did an entire album digitally using protools. They then sat down and listened to it, Dave Grohl said it was boring rubbish, so they scrapped it all and started again using analogue gear. I think this was the In Your Honor album.

Edits: damn autocorrect.

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Present Tense
PostPosted: Sun July 07, 2013 10:54 pm 
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Bass line is one of Aments great moments. I used to hear the jam lyrics as "I see the light on' and will never spoil that by finding out the real words like I did with In My Tree.


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Mankind
PostPosted: Mon July 08, 2013 12:58 am 
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Mankind

Mankind is a tough transition from Present Tense, if for no other reason than the fact that Present Tense so nicely encapsulates what No Code is trying to do, and Mankind feels like a bit of an outlier (and not just because Stone is singing). So why have the songthere, or why track the album the way they d? Yyou could just as easily moved mankind and I’m open up and leave around the bend following Present Tense, which might feel a bit better ( though I’ve never tested this out).

One possibility, and the best reason I could come up with (if we’re going to try to do better than nothing) is that each of these songs represents a way to live your life after the personal journal, the growth and self-development, of the rest of the record, each song telling part of the story until Around the Bend ties it all together.

One way to live in the present, to not take the world too seriously, is to disenchant it. It’s all fake, it’s all posturing, none of it is real, none of it has intrinsic meaning. If there is nothing at stake in the world you don’t have to care too much about it. You can live a self-referential life if you live in a self-referential world.

The music reflects that. It’s a sarcastic, wry song, smiling at a joke that the uninitiated just do not get. Stone’s voice is perfect for that, since he always seems to come across as slightly removed from everyone else--like you are in possession of some secret the rest of the world that would blow people’s minds if they knew to look for it.

But there’s something unsettled about all this. Although the song chronicles how artificial our lives are, the singer keeps wondering why people don’t see it, or, if they do, why do they keep trying to pretend otherwise. It’s an important question (‘what’s got the whole world faking it’) and it needs an answer. If the answer is simply that we’re all sheep following the herd (we do it because everyone else is doing it) then we’ve essentially negated the entirety of the album, and Mankind is a bit too slight a track for that to be its intention ( Pearl Jam doesn’t really write/think like that anyway). A dismissive, cynical apathy gets us nowhere. It stops the journey too soon, when the point of the album is to make the journey easier.

Instead people keep faking it because they want meaning. They need it. It is quite likely that all the surrounding bullshit stops us from finding it, that it gets harder to find an approach and a way to live (not Eddie’s most elegant line, but the sentiment is clear). It’s not that Mankind is artificial, superficial, full of shit. The problem is that Mankind is lost, a reminder, after the fact, of why the journey was necessary in the first place

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Mankind
PostPosted: Mon July 08, 2013 1:11 am 
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stip wrote:
Mankind

You could just as easily moved mankind and I’m open up and leave around the bend following Present Tense, which might feel a bit better ( though I’ve never tested this out).

This is how I have listened to it for the last few years, and I can't go back. It just finishes so much better, with Present Tense being the 'Crescendo' of the album, flowing into Around the Bend which is like the fade out/credits rolling kind of tune. To me it just gels together beautifully.

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Mankind
PostPosted: Mon July 08, 2013 3:06 pm 
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The transition from Present Tense to Mankind never really bothered me. Musically, No Code is all over the place in terms of styles before it ever even gets there, so it's not really the straw that breaks the camel's back.


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Mankind
PostPosted: Mon July 08, 2013 3:07 pm 
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i suppose not, but it is one of the opportunities the album would have to right itself, especially before the finish. The all over the place nature of No Code has always rubbed me the wrong way, though.

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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Mankind
PostPosted: Mon July 08, 2013 3:14 pm 
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Well, I don't really think it's a bad song, either, so I'm not coming from this feeling of the album taking a big hit at that point.

I have no problem with all-over-the-place records, provided that there's some feeling of cohesion behind it, be it an atmosphere, or something even more indescribable. No Code does that well, albeit not as well as (to me) Binaural, which covers a lot of sonic ground but always feel very much of a piece.


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Mankind
PostPosted: Mon July 08, 2013 4:03 pm 
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digster wrote:
Well, I don't really think it's a bad song, either, so I'm not coming from this feeling of the album taking a big hit at that point.

I have no problem with all-over-the-place records, provided that there's some feeling of cohesion behind it, be it an atmosphere, or something even more indescribable. No Code does that well, albeit not as well as (to me) Binaural, which covers a lot of sonic ground but always feel very much of a piece.

I would disagree. Something about No Code feels much more connected and cohesive to me than Binaural. I wonder what it is that you're responding to that I'm not (and vice versa). Music is so awesome, the way it can affect people on different levels for so many different reasons.

Having just listened to the entire PJ catalog in chronological order, I can say one of the few things that really surprised me, after all this time, is how well No Cod hangs together in the context of the the entire catalog. Also, Mankind is a better song that I've ever given it credit for. It's still not top tier Pearl Jam, but it makes more sense to me now. Maybe Stip's right. Maybe I've been recently initiated. Maybe I get it now.


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 Post subject: Re: A Guided Tour of No Code: Mankind
PostPosted: Mon July 08, 2013 4:27 pm 
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Maybe I framed it wrong; I feel a strong cohesiveness across a wide variety of sounds on Binaural, but because I'd rank it above No Code in that regard doesn't mean the latter has anything wrong with it.

Plus, if there's an album someone likes better, in terms of the quality of the songs, I feel like cohesiveness will come much more naturally and easily. For example, I find Backspacer to be one of the more disjointed records the band has done, but I'm sure my opinion on the song quality impacts that feeling.


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