Skip to main content

THE GRUNGE MATCH - 088

Match 088:

Alice In Chains "Again" (Tatoo Of Pain Mix) (1996)
Nirvana "Anorexorcist" (1987)
Pearl Jam "Bu$hleaguer" (2002)
Soundgarden "An Unkind" (1996)

Oh dear God.  This is the most cringeworthy 90's thing you could imagine.  An industrial techno remix of "Again".  It's...it's just the worst.

"Anorexorcist" is from a radio session for KAOS 89.3 FM in Olympia, WA, recorded on May 6, 1987, two months after their first show.  It's pretty good by "local band just formed and figuring out what we're doing" standards.  It's got some real teeth; even the use of guitar noise seems mostly intentional, which is not something all guitarists pick up on.  It's even got a groove.  I was not expecting to like this nearly as much as I do.

"Bu$hleaguer" is a pretentious anti-Bush protest song.  The problem isn't with the message, but with the fact that the vocals are free-form spoken word with a milquetoast chorus that doesn't really mesh with what they're trying to say.  Come to think of it, the message is kind of lost in the attempt to make it sound lofty.  This really falls on its face, which is unfortunate because it came out at a time when we needed dissenting voices in the leadup to the Iraq war and the only notable example was the Dixie Chicks, who's career ended because of it.  The song fades out after the second chorus instead of even trying to do a middle section or a third verse, much like the resistance to Bush fizzled out before it could begin.

"An Unkind" is uncharacteristic for "Down On The Upside"; it has a quick tempo and a shit hot guitar riff for the verse.  The chorus soars pretty high considering there's not a lot of room to build (or breathe).  Two minutes almost on the nose, and this tasty little morsel peaces out.  And you know what?  That's perfectly fine.

"An Unkind": 4
"Anorexorcist": 3
"Bu$hleaguer": 2 (I wish I could give it a 1)
"Again" (Tatoo Of Pain Remix): 1 (I wish I could give it a 0)

TOTALS:

Alice In Chains: 233
Soundgarden: 232
Pearl Jam: 212
Nirvana: 203

Wow.  Did not realize that Soundgarden was 20 ahead of Pearl Jam.  They're also back to within one point of the lead.  Tomorrow we see the end of "Down On The Upside", "Music Bank", and Layne Staley's studio recording career.  It's gonna be morose.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

THE BIG FOUR SONG CHALLENGE SERIES - Update Wrap-Up

Well, The Big Four Song Challenge Series Update has drawn to a close, and here we are in the aftermath.  Metallica edged out Megadeth on the strength of bonus material, Anthrax did okay and Slayer should have broken up when Jeff Hanneman died.  For real, all coming back with another album did for them was...well, make them money and allow them to keep touring and making more money, so there's that.  But more importantly, by releasing "Repentless", they dropped from two to three on my completely arbitrary opinion based blog series status ranking system!  Surely, that can't have been worth a couple million bucks?

Anyhow, I'm getting the feeling that rock music in general is going to need to evolve into something completely different or call it quits altogether.  Rock has had its 60 year run just like jazz did before it, and if it doesn't come up with something soon, it will fade away from the public consciousness, only to return in Gap commercials in the 2040…

THE BIG FOUR SONG CHALLENGE SERIES - Matchup 172

Anthrax "Impaled" (2016) VS Megadeth "Dystopia" (2016) VS Metallica "Atlas, Rise!" (2016) VS Slayer "Jihad" (Live from Sofia, Bulgaria) (2010)

Unfortunately, Anthrax drew the short straw here, as "Impaled" is a middling intro that, on top of being a bit of a non-song, goes on a hair too long for its own good.

"Dystopia" is a solid, upbeat fist-pumper that was a no-brainer to make the first single off the album of the same name.  It may seem a little milquetoast for the first half, but once the "single" part falls away, it reveals a banger in the back half that makes you remember why you like this stuff in the first place.  It'll take more than one listen to realize how cool this song is, but on play two or three you'll be nodding your head with a pleased scowl on your face.

My first impression of "Atlas, Rise!" was "This is the most average Metallica song ever."  Like if you took all the Met…

THE BIG FOUR SONG CHALLENGE SERIES - Matchup 178

Anthrax "Suzerain" (2016) VS Megadeth "Conquer Or Die!" (2016) VS Metallica "ManUNkind" (2016) VS Slayer "Cast The First Stone" (2015)

"Suzerain" is your pentennial reminder that Charlie Bennante don't fuck around.  Definitely the most fiery song on "For All Kings", and probably the closest to the old Anthrax as we're going to get ever again.  Bang your head in reflection.

"Conquer Or Die!" is more old school, though whether that works for or against it is up to you.  It's the three minute instrumental interlude.  This one is...fine.  Honestly, it's better than fine when compared to the song I have to review next, so I shan't complain too loudly.  But it is a song you wouldn't exactly miss if it fell off the face of the planet either.

"ManUNkind" was the point where I stopped giving "Hardwired...To Self-Destruct" the benefit of the doubt and started dreading the fact that I h…