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 Post subject: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Fri December 28, 2012 4:17 pm 
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old thread archived here


Buggy wrote:
This is a multi-part series for each album. We'll move on to the next album when it seems like it's been discussed enough. I'd like to reiterate that the aim of these discussions is to hear opinions on what you think is the single most significant flaw for the album being discussed. We're not looking for general album bashing, but rather a critical look at the single biggest weakness for each record.

Example of a poor post:
There are so many things that suck on this album. Track 4, 8 and 9 are terrible and the lyrics for such and such a song a really bad. Not only that, but the cover is stupid.

Like I said, we're not looking for general album bashing. What I suggest is to go give a listen to the album being discussed. For some of us, it's been a while listening to these older albums all the way through, and it helps you think and take that critical view before you post. Try and be insightful and give good reasons why you believe the flaw you're pointing out is the biggest flaw of the album.

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 1:28 pm 
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Okay, we're at the point where none of these albums are anybody's sacred cow, so this should be interesting.

S/T is maybe pearl jam's most deeply flawed record, because the flaws really severely hamstring what could have been a great record.

1. The production: I get what there were going for. We do not remember it this way, but at the time the big beef with Riot Act was that it was a flat, lifeless, dispirited, unengaging album. So the 'crank everything up to 11' approach to S/T makes sense, And there are some songs it works for (the first three in particular). Loud, abrasive. defiant, in your face. They come roaring back to life after the defeated mumbling of Riot Act. It was Pearl Jam being Pearl Jam. the first time the stupid 'return to form' label probably made sense. BUT after the first three songs this decision almost never works to the songs credit. Severed Hand sounds curiously thin for such a huge song. Marker sounds too sandpapery for the soaring U2 vibe they were going for. Parachutes is a gorgeous off kilter melody that needed a subtler treatment. Unemployable needed a more working class classic rock feel to it. Come Back, which I think is a wonderful song, needed to be much smoother. Army Reserve could have used more atmosphere and room to breathe. And so on. After the Life Wasted - Comatose run (and comatose is where this style is most effective, I think), it really doesn't do the songs justice.

2. Weak songs: This is three albums in a row where there are just some noticeably weak songs. Gone, Big Wave, and especially Inside Job, while each not necessarily lacking their charms (Gone in particular I enjoyed a lot when it first came out, in part because I was desperate for a 'classic' pearl jam chorus after Binaural and Riot Act), have that b-side feel to them. And after the first run of 6 songs (some people would go to 7, but I don't like unemployable very much) there are no anchor tracks in the back half of the album. Really the only songs on there I even care about anymore are Come Back and the reprise, although every now and then I like hearing Army Reserve. Easily the most top heavy album

3. Cold Confession/Let It Ride: I'm not a big fan of Let it Ride, personally, but Cold Confession is fantastic, and makes the weaker songs on the end even more frustrating. This is three albums in a row where you can make a very serious claim that the best song was left off the album.

4. Half assing the concept: Eddie has gone on record saying (I think it was Eddie) that there is a concept album lurking in here. I wish they went for it. It's not a huge flaw, and this could have fallen on its face, but there is a narrative strain to these songs that hasn't really existed before or since. It's not where Eddie is at his best, but it would have been cool to explore.

5. The Life Wasted fade out: Never forget :peace:

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 1:30 pm 
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Just to say something nice about S/T, the first three songs might still very well be my favorite three song sequence in the catalog. Three 5 star songs in a row

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 1:33 pm 
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stip wrote:
Just to say something nice about S/T, the first three songs might still very well be my favorite three song sequence in the catalog. Three 5 star songs in a row





Seriously, though-

Life Wasted is a shell of what it is trying to be. It's PJ trying to be PJ and failing.

WWS is stuck in the middle between good and The Fixer

Comatose is a good song, but only 1 of 3 good tracks on the album, along with Marker and Parachutes.

Severed Hand, Unemployable, Big Wave, Army Reserve are listenable.

The rest fit with the clip above.


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 2:04 pm 
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Wants to be as visceral and emotionally direct as Vs and Vitalogy, but also wants to be the smartest kid in the room. Each goal undercuts the other.

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 2:17 pm 
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after reading what eddie vedder had to say about it, i think the story line is there for a concept album. i dunno if its directly related to the Tillman brothers or just inspired by the, but its there. i think that actually might be a flaw of the album, its like they tried to end the story on a positive note with Inside Job instead of Cold Confession.


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 2:52 pm 
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If they had actually put this out as a concept album with a connected storyline, many of its other shortcomings would have been forgiven.

Missed opportunity, and would have been a perfect time to release an album with that concept.


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 5:50 pm 
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I'll never forgive the album cover art.


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 5:53 pm 
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The cover. Major flaw.

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 5:54 pm 
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major flaw: shit songs that sound like shit

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 5:55 pm 
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stip wrote:
1. Theproduction mastering:


FTFY

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_mastering

Examples of possible actions taken during mastering:

Editing minor flaws.
Applying noise reduction to eliminate clicks, dropouts, hum and hiss.
Adjusting stereo width.
Adding ambience.
Equalize audio across tracks for the purpose of optimized frequency distribution.
Adjust volume.
Dynamic range compression or expansion.
Peak limit.
Dither.


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:03 pm 
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There is a good album in Avocado somewhere, but we just didn't get it.


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:06 pm 
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Heathen wrote:
major flaw: shit songs that sound like shit

lock her up


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:24 pm 
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That's too easy.. There are good songs' to be found here.

Severed hand
Comatose
Parachutes
Army reserve
These are all fantastic songs.

Marker
Big wave
Unemployable
Inside job
These are quite respectable attempts, though the execution falls short. Marker and inside job are simply a bit of a bore to trek through, but they have good foundations. Big wave and unemployable just have cringe worthy lyrics, though I like both songs.

The sound of this album is definitely a problem, but the song-writing really wasn't bad at all. Consider that cold confession and let it ride also came from this era and it still seems like a band inspired.

The album cover sucks, easily their worst, but the art inside was pretty awesome.

Their decision to not follow through on the concept album idea was a mistake, an I get the impression they regret it now.

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:28 pm 
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Album's Major Flaw: Pearl Jam

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:31 pm 
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nobody in their right mind likes this record.

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:32 pm 
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The clumsy, out of touch attempt at reaching the common man with those awful lyrics is the worst thing about it. Or what McP said.

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:36 pm 
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dimejinky99 wrote:
nobody in their right mind likes this record.


Image


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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:36 pm 
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he's even dressing like Bruce now, is our ed.

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 Post subject: Re: What is Each Album's Major Flaw?: Pearl Jam
PostPosted: Mon June 23, 2014 6:36 pm 
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darth_vedder wrote:
dimejinky99 wrote:
nobody in their right mind likes this record.


Image





:haha:

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