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Down On The Upside

This is no joke – one of the best albums I have ever heard. It’s one of those that you can sit down and listen to start to finish, over and over. Or it’s got the singles or the songs for different moods. I came late to the Soundgarden party but this one is more melodic and experimental, though not more restrained than their previous efforts. I can’t recommend this album enough to fans of all kinds of rock. .. Soundgarden really tread a new path in the rock world and this album is a fine showcase of their efforts. Check it out!

Overlooked 1996 studio album, features ‘Pretty Noose’ & ‘Burden In My Hand’

 

 

 

Down On The Upside Review

 

I own hundreds & hundreds of cds. I’ve played in bands. I’ve bought & sold more audio gear, basses, guitars, amps, speakers, than I’d care to talk about. I cannot recall ever saying to myself, quietly and awe-struck, as a cd was playing, “HOLY S*** HOW DID THEY MAKE SONGS THIS GOOD?” I know that sounds like stupid hyperbole, but I really said this and I really did not ‘mean’ to say it for someone’s script. Screaming Life / FOPP, Ultramega OK, Loud Love, and much of Badmotorfinger – those represent the raw, unpredictable sweet spot for me with enough structure, wildness, weird sounds, angst, unpredictability, and (somehow) fun at the same time to really put Soundgarden in their own category. Superkunknown wasn’t my taste – too forced & self-conscious, and the hooks for the most part weren’t even all that interesting. Objectively speaking (so people say?) Superunknown succeeded in creating their commercial masterwork, but that doesn’t mean everyone likes it either. Not the fans from the beginning, like me, anyway. King Animal (fast forward a little) is strong & proves the band is still intact, looking ahead, OK, but I don’t enjoy listening to it all that much, sadly. It holds up, but that’s about all. There are a few good songs and a few terrible ones, a first for Soundgarden. Down On The Upside, as the first reviewer put it so well, crystallizes absolutely everything about the band that I love, goes further than any other album, and somehow pulls it off in such a confident, swaggering way that it’s breathtaking. The timbre. The mix. The ensemble of instruments they put together. The newfound staggering power & muscle of the playing. Matt’s drumming sounds noticeably more crisp & forceful than ever, somehow. The recording quality is outstanding. Chris’ voice never sounded better. I could go on & on & on – the songwriting is in a different league, more mature, taking you on a more deliberate & impressive travel to a musical destination, rather than just bashing out creative riffs “but, harder. ” It’s hard to fathom any other album with so many different styles of “five-star” sounds all in the same set-list. Burden In My Hand, Dusty, Tighter & Tighter, all worthy of “epic” “wow!” “phenomenal” titles. There are no weak tracks. The rockers are smoking. The moody stuff broods and builds & draws you in. The happy stuff feels exuberant, almost. The punk influenced stuff doesn’t have to make any apologies. The quintessential Zep-No-Soundgarden! track “Tighter & Tighter” takes the band to where we always knew they could reach in sublime, benchmarking fashion. “Boot Camp” as other reviewers have noted has the peculiar and somewhat magical effect that when it’s playing, it doesn’t grab you or hook you, or seem to all that memorable in any way. But then you find yourself, of all 16 tracks, quietly singing it to yourself days later after just a few listens. Kinda spooky . It’s hard to overstate my opinion of this cd. I missed it (only 20 years or so?) because after Superunknown, I’d written them off as gone the way of the dollars, and figured Down On The Upside was more of the same. How wrong I was. “HOLY S*** how did they. ..?” -Read Reviews-

Sounds great remastered classic album from the 90s grunge era, a must have.

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