Skip to main content


Match 040:

Alice In Chains "Sludge Factory" (1995)
Nirvana "Aero Zeppelin" (1992)
Pearl Jam "Who You Are" (1996)
Soundgarden "Room A Thousand Years Wide" (1991)

The beginning of "Sludge Factory" is the best part of the song.  I'm not saying it's all downhill from there, but that opening is just tits.  And that riff, despite only the chorus to break it up and only being three notes NEVER gets old.  This song is over seven minutes.  It never gets old.  It still cuts just as hard the hundreth time they hit that three note barrage as the first.  Then the ending kinda goes to some bullshit jam thing which sort of undercuts what went before it but not too badly.

"Aero Zeppelin" is one of my favorite songs on "Incesticide".  It's got vocals you can sort of understand for a change, but the delivery is so easy-going you don't need to care what's being said.  It's got some cool riffs, it's got solid bass work from Krist Novoselic, it's got energy, and when the vocals get yelly you can actually understand them better.  Plus that riff in what stands in for a chorus?  One of my favorite Nirvana riffs.  Shit is metal, yo.

I've never really liked "Who You Are".  I remember from the first time I heard it in the summer of '96 through to the thousanth I'd heard it in the summer of '96, this song was a mess.  It sounded like they just stopped giving a fuck and started playing whatever random objects they found in the studio instead of actual instruments and Vedder just...floated away into shit land.

It is an awkward song to be sure, but now I dig the vocals a lot more, and kind of realize they're the backbone of the song instead of the normal rock instruments I'd become so familiar with.  This is actually pretty cool now that I listen to it for the first time since 2008.  So yeah.  I've changed my mind about this one.  It took twenty years, but I finally get it now.  Slow learner.  (Though to be fair, this song is OUT THERE.  But I think that's what I like about it now.)

"Room A Thousand Years Wide" is one of my favorite Soundgarden songs.  I've loved it since the first time I heard it on WQFM and I still love it now.  It's got an uncharacteristically chill delivery from Cornell until the chorus (possibly owing to this being one of the only songs he didn't write any part of in the band's history), it's got a rhythm that sounds a lot more fucked up than the 6/4 it is, and it's got a fucking SAXOPHONE SOLO OUT OF NOWHERE at the end.  How can you compete with that?

"Room A Thousand Years Wide": 4
"Aero Zeppelin": 3
"Sludge Factory": 2
"Who We Are": 1

Hey, I like "Who We Are", but this is actually some stiff competition. But don't feel too sorry for Pearl Jam.  They're still on top (for now...)


Pearl Jam: 118
Alice In Chains: 110
Nirvana: 90
Soundgarden: 84

Come back tomorrow for four songs that are all pretty laid back.


Popular posts from this blog


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…


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…


Anthrax "Vice Of The People" (2016) VS Megadeth "Melt The Ice Away" (2016) VS Metallica "When A Blind Man Cries" (2016) VS Slayer "Pride In Prejudice" (2015)

"Vice Of The People" is the Japanese bonus track for "For All Kings".  Aaaand it starts with that doofy march beat.  Wonderful.  The lyrics don't do it any favors in the "I should take this seriously" department either.  And like most of the songs I've slagged in this Update process, it's not bad.  It's just so "...whatever."

"Melt The Ice Away" is a Budgie cover that was the Spotify exclusive bonus track for "Dystopia".  It's funny how the original Budgie tracks are often much softer than the bands that cover them and turn them into fucking barnburners.  This song sounds a little goofy in the vocals and lyrics department, but knowing it's a Budgie song, it totally gets a pass.  And unlike some covers of Budgi…