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THE GRUNGE MATCH - 011

Match 011:

Alice In Chains "I Know Somethin (Bout You)" (1990)
Nirvana "Sifting" (1989)
Pearl Jam "Release" (1991)
Soundgarden "All Your Lies" (1988)

Okay, I know I said "Put You Down" was one of the most cock rock songs in the competition, but "I Know Somethin' ('bout You)" might just out-do it in that department.  Fortunately, it's a better song than "Put You Down", and in an absolute rarity for the Alice In Chains catalogue, this song is actually kind of fun!  It's got some weird jazz and funk phrasings but with late period hair metal foundations.  It's not something that sounds good on paper, but it's actually a decent experience.

"Sifting" on the other hand, feels like a bit of a slog.  At 5:24, it's a full minute longer than the next longest thing on "Bleach".  To its advantage, it's got more of a melodic structure to it while still having some bite.  It was the original finale to the album ("Big Cheese" and "Downer" were included in the re-issue when Geffen picked it up), and it sounds like it should have been the ending; it's a much more fitting crescendo.  It's got a groove, even if it's a bit simplistic and repetitive.

I've never really liked "Release", but it's never really been there enough for me to hate it either.  I'm just glad this meandering mess wasn't one of the songs that gets the shit played out of it to this very day, because it's kind of morose in spite of a decent chorus and the theme of catharsis that I relate to.  In a way, it's like "Ten" has spent all its energy and this is where it finally comes to terms with its own reality.

 "All Your Lies" feels like Soundgarden starting to kick into gear, even if the chorus doesn't sound like typical Soundgarden.  The verses are nice and groovy and tense, and the rest of it is fast-paced to keep you moving around on the floor.

This one's gone all topsy-turvy:

"All Your Lies": 4
"I Know Somethin' ('bout You)": 3
"Sifting": 2
"Release": 1

TOTALS:

Pearl Jam: 39
Alice In Chains: 29
Nirvana: 23
Soundgarden: 19

"Ten" is in the books.  Unfortunately for Alice In Chains, Soundgarden and Nirvana, "Vs" was also a really good album.  But after tomorrow, the biggest grunge album in history makes its debut entry into the race, so stay tuned!

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