Review #120: (Classic Album) Pearl Jam – Ten

Artist – Pearl Jam
Album – Ten

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Pearl Jam are a rock band from Seattle, USA. The band formed in 1990 after the break up of a few members previous band Mother Love Bone. Pearl Jam consists of members Eddie Vedder – vocals/guitar, Mike McCready – guitar, Stone Gossard – guitar, Jeff Ament – bass and Matt Cameron – drums (also of the band Soundgarden). As well as being known for their energetic stage show and hit songs, the band gained fame as activists for or against many causes they believed in, for instance against the ridiculous prices ticketmaster charged or refusing to do music videos/interviews, rather focusing on the music. Pearl Jam have managed to outlast many of their peers in the seattle scene during the 90s, still selling out stadiums and releasing hit albums.

As with many of these classic albums ‘Ten’ is a debut. The success of debut albums is due to them being a culmination of the bands tested and tried songs in the large space between forming and releasing that album, the space between each other album isn’t as large. Ten firstly includes Pearl Jam’s four most popular songs, ‘Black’, ‘Jeremy’, ‘Even Flow’ and ‘Alive’, four extremely catchy and memorable tracks chorus-wise. For any guitarist ‘Ten’ is a masterclass in rock guitar, featuring solid riffs ‘Even Flow’, shredding but still emotion ridden solos ‘Alive’ and then random moments of interest ‘Jeremy’. Eddie Vedder’s vocals created a new style all in there own, spawning numerous vocalists trying to copy his tone and delivery, but failing. Listen to Jeremy for the best representative of how soft but also powerful Vedder can be, not shy to a scream or growl either if a certain more powerful moment dynamically is coming. On this album Dave Krusen was the drummer, his use of fills and odd patterns in some of the more eclectic songs is masterful, complimenting McCreadies riffs and dynamically pushing each song to another level. There are numerous grunge bands that made it during the 90s, I like to see them as Nirvana being the collaboration of pop and aggression/anxiety, Soundgarden as the technical and innovative band and then Pearl Jam as the perfect mixture of all of this, but incorporating more of the rock band aesthetic.

‘Ten’ is one of those albums people will be listening to for years and years, showcased as one of the greatest rock albums to ever be recorded. Pearl Jam seem to be a collaboration of artists that truly care about the music and not the image, as well as being a group of musicians that fit perfectly together, filling in each others flaws, to create a tight and professional outfit

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