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THE GRUNGE MATCH - 027

Match 027:

Alice In Chains "Iron Gland" (1992)
Nirvana "Even In His Youth" (1992)
Pearl Jam "Tremor Christ" (1994)
Soundgarden "Full On Kevin's Mom" (1989)

"Iron Gland", despite having Tom Araya from Slayer on vocals, is merely interstitial bullshit.  It's 44 seconds of noise that might have been funny 25 years ago, but now is a track you either skip when it comes up, aren't paying attention enough to care, or really disappoints you when you hit it on random.  It's an artifact of the CD age: The album skit.

"Even In His Youth" is another track from the "Hormoaning" EP.  Production wise, it sounds more like "Bleach", but it's still got the energy of something from "Nevermind" or "Incesticide".  ("Incesticide" is the reason we're only covering two songs from "Hormoaning", since most of the other material from the latter ended up on the former.)  The song's pretty sloppy and there's not much to it, though.

"Tremor Christ" has an almost perfect drum sound.  I love the expansiveness of it, especially in the setting of this slower, more deliberate song.  "Tremor Christ" isn't really hitting the same highs for me as some of Pearl Jam's other material, but it's a bit of a departure for them.  It's not nearly as direct as anything up to this point, and it was probably the best spot on the album to put this, since it signified that things were fittin' to get more than a bit oblique.  I still like it, but you have to be in a certain kind of mood to get into its slowness.  Better when listening to the album than individually.

"Full On Kevin's Mom" is another song that makes early Soundgarden hard to love.  It's not that I can't stand music that doesn't take itself seriously, but the joke here is kind of lost on me.  If it is trying to be serious, to make some kind of statement, then it's failing.  Still, it's not necessarily terrible.  It's double time, it's...okay.  It's the musical, lyrical equivalent of a thrash song being a person and making fart noises instead of a commencement speech.  It's unapologetically dumb but not good enough to be amusing.  Instead it's kind of...meh.  But it's up against lousy competition, so:

"Tremor Christ": 4
"Full On Kevin's Mom": 3
"Even In His Youth": 2
"Iron Gland": 1

TOTALS:

Pearl Jam: 91
Alice In Chains: 67
Nirvana: 65
Soundgarden: 47

Tomorrow for match 028, we introduce Nirvana's "Incesticide".  See you then!

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