Skip to main content


Match 094:

Alice In Chains "Love, Hate, Love" (Live) (1993)
Nirvana "Raunchola (aka: Erectum) / Moby Dick" (1988)
Pearl Jam "Comatose" (2006)
Soundgarden "Been Away Too Long" (2012)

This version of "Love, Hate, Love" is from the same Glasgow show of the previous two entries.  It sounds like the band is being too cautious with their dynamics going into the song, like they're trying desperately to come down off the high of "Man In The Box" and play this really slow, atmospheric piece.  They get there by the first chorus, but it's a bit of a struggle for restraint.  As a result the pace is kind of all over the place during the verses.  It's still powerful, but not an improvement on the album version like the song before it.

"Raunchola" is a bootleg live recording from January 1988.  It has some spastic bass line, some bullshit guitar chord that sounds once a measure, then a Dead Milkmen style punk chorus completely smashed to death by some SERIOUS power chords for about two measures.  For real, those two measures should be expanded into their own song; they had no business being stuck forever in this dreck.  Then of course, after two minutes they play the shittiest version of Led Zeppelin's "Moby Dick" you've ever heard in your life.  Frustrating all around.

"Comatose" is mercifully short compared to today's first two songs.  It actually reminds me a bit of "Spin The Black Circle".  It's got some weird post-chorus dissonant dueling guitar leads that come out of nowhere, but it sounds more like an upbeat version of the paranoid and agro "Spin".  It's also got a short solo (two measures) with some shredding.  An odd little bird.

"Been Away Too Long" is the leadoff track and the too-self-aware comeback single from Soundgarden's late 2012 album "King Animal".  As of this writing, this album isn't even five years old; you could almost call it contemporary.  Thing is, as far as comebacks go, this was NOT the foot they wanted to lead with.  In spite of a bridge way more interesting than this song warrants, "Been Away Too Long" is the definition of underwhelming.

Still, it's sort of catchy, I guess, and "Comatose" is it's only competition...Can I really give this thing a 4?  Nah.  On second listen, Pearl Jam is worthy.

"Comatose": 4
"Been Away Too Long": 3
"Love, Hate, Love" (Live): 2
"Raunchola (aka: Erectum) / Moby Dick": 1


Alice In Chains: 247
Soundgarden: 247
Pearl Jam: 231
Nirvana: 215

Another day, another tie.  Now that Soundgarden is firmly in the new millennium, we'll see how this plays out (speaking of albums I only ever listened to once...)


Popular posts from this blog


This has certainly been a heck of a thing.

Writing this started out as a labor of love to a subgenre of rock and roll that came along at the perfect time for me (both when I was entering middle school in the bottom 5 of the popularity pecking order and when I started buying albums at the impressionable age of 11).  It obviously took a long time to put together: August 29th, 2016 is when I began planning, May 24th is when I wrote the last entry, the wee hours of August 1st, 2017 is when I finished proofreading and uploading the entries to the blog with video links, and here I am typing these words on August 15th.

The elephant in the room is this genre seems to be built on death.  Three of the four frontmen of these bands are dead, one of which occurred during the run of this series.  (Shouts to Alice In Chains bassist Mike Starr as well.  R.I.P.)  On top of that, Pearl Jam only exists because the lead singer of Mother Love Bone died, causing that band to break up.  If you go down the nex…

R.I.P. Chris Cornell

The Grunge Match is suspended indefinitely.

I don't know when it will resume.  This hits way too close to home for way too many reasons.

As far as writing goes, I just did Match 112 Tuesday night.  I have no interest in going back through and making this a love letter to the departed, nor bashing him for tearing our hearts out.  I have no idea when I'll be able to even listen to Soundgarden again, and when I do, it won't be the fucking same so there's no way I can give any kind of objective rating.  Chris Cornell was the soul of that band, the thing that took sludge with a few acrobatic musical flourishes and made it into the hellfire slinging, metal rending monster that it needed to be.

So yeah.  This one hurts.  The man is dead.  The music remains, but is changed forever.  His friends, family and fans are suffering incalculable grief.  There's not much more to say, so silence seems like the best option.


Since dusting off The Big Four Song Challenge Series I got to thinking.  What about the other thrash metal giants out there?  There's always been a debate as to who the next four bands would be on the list.  The two constants are always Testament and Exodus, but nobody can agree who's 5 and who's 6.  Then nobody can agree on who the next two bands would be.  Overkill gets thrown around a lot, but they're not really as big as the two bands I've chosen to fill those slots.

Oh yeah.  Probably should have mentioned.  Though you've probably guessed by the blog post title, I am doing a completely new series of blogs called "The Next Four Song Challenge Series".  Same rules, same set up as before and same INSANE amount of blog posts.  The four bands we're going to be covering are as follows:

Suicidal Tendencies

Why not Overkill?  For one, I could never stand the guy's voice, but all told, Sepultura and Suicidal are bigger h…