In this Music Monday Blog, we are going to look at the reunion record of Soundgarden. King Animal was released in the later part of 2012. Soundgarden was founded in Seattle, Washington in 1984 by Chris Cornell and Kim Thayil. Soundgarden was the first of the Seattle Grunge bands to sign with a major label in 1988. They found their success in the 1990’s like the rest of their friends like Alice In Chains, Nirvana, etc. The band broke up in 1996 because of create direction issues. They reunion in 2010 and King Animal followed shortly after that. Soundgarden has six studio records including this record. They also have one live record, four greatest hits records, and six EP’s. Let us get into the music.
Been Away Too Long
This song is the first single off of King Animal. Nice overdrive guitar riff at the beginning and then the drums come in with the bass. Chris still has his voice and kept it healthy. This song is something you would hear off their record called “Down On The Upside.” It has a nice pace to the song. This is a great comeback song for this great metal group. There is some great music on this song. Great finish to the song.
I am loving the guitar effect and the opening riff with a strong backbone from the drums and bass. I am loving the music and great placement from the singer for his singing lines. I am loving the lyrics on the last two songs. There is a nice pace to the song. I love the short guitar solo from Kim. This band was never afraid to put guitar solos in their songs. Nice finish to this song.
By Crooked Steps
I love the drums and guitar work set in the background at the beginning of the song. It sounds like it comes slowly to the front and then snaps right into your face. I am loving this song so far. This reminds me of old school Soundgarden. It has that deep dark theme in the music and lyrics. The guitar riff is simple but it fits for what the band is trying to do in this song. Nice guitar break and solo from Kim in the later part of the song. This song is my favorite song so far on King Animal. I am loving the well placed back up vocals with Chris singing over the top of it. I am loving the building up for the ending of the song. It has a great finish.
A Thousand Days Before
A Thousand Days Before starts out with some nice guitar work. I am loving the drumming on this song and Chris comes in with the bass player. I am loving the timing of the bass when it enters the song. He does not starts with the drums when most bass players starts playing with the drums. There is some great guitar work on this song. It is a little slower pace to the rest of the songs from the beginning of the record. Chris puts some thought in singing on this song. I love the lyrics.
Blood On The Valley Floor
This song has that old school Soundgarden guitar playing, which is what made them famous. It has that Classic Black Sabbath dark evil guitar riff. I am not saying this is a Black Sabbath guitar work. It has the sounds of it. This is something I could hear off their first few records. I am loving Chris’s singing on Blood On The Valley Floor. This is one of my favorite songs. Great drumming towards the end.
Bones Of Birds
There is some great guitar work at the beginning of Bones Of Birds. This song is slower than the rest of the songs. It is perfect timing for a slower song. There is some solid drumming and bass work on this song. Chris has a nice melody and lyrics in this song. There is some well placed simple keyboard work on this song. This is a very well written song. The music echoes the feeling of the lyrics that Chris wrote for Bones Of Birds. This is a great song. I love it. Nice touch on the end of the song with a simple bass line too.
Taree starts out with drums and guitar work that echos something off Superunknown. This sounds like something between Black Hole Sun to Fell On Black Days. Taree sounds like a loss track off Superunknown. This is a great song. I am loving it. It is one of my favorite song on this record so far. I love the guitar break in the middle of the song. This is a great comeback record so far. All the songs do not sound like fillers. Soundgarden has put their soul into all of these songs so far.
Attrition starts out with some nice guitar work at the beginning of the song. I am loving the melody in this song. There is some great double vocal singing. One is high and the other is low. Nice touch and well placed. There is some great drumming and lyrics also on this song. This song was straight to the point. I love the ending of this song too.
Black Saturday has nice acoustic guitar work with congas in place of the drums. I love the dancing bass playing with some great singing from Chris. The drums come in but they play the background. I love the build of in this song. The distorted guitar comes in but does not over power the rest of the music. This is extremely well written song. This song has some nice rhythm and pace to the music.
Chris with an acoustic guitar playing while singing. The drums just like the last song comes in but it is more of backup with the bass playing. I love main and chorus riff. There is a ton going on in this song. Yet another well written song from Soundgarden. Chris has written some great lyrics. I love the meaning and theme behind them. Kim has a great guitar break to semi guitar solo. This is the new Soundgarden. This song defines the new Soundgarden sound in their music. This band has a turn a corner unlike their other peers.
Worse Dreams has some great guitar work at the beginning of it. I love the drums and bass line at the beginning. This is one sick bass line. It is well placed with the drums. The guitar echos the bass playing. The music is pretty powerful. This band is pushing the limits of music on this song. This song sounds like something off The Doors hey day. It is like Soundgarden took their sound and mixed it with the The Doors sound in this song. I am loving this song.
Eyelid’s Mouth has some drums and bass work with guitar work in the background. The main riff is something else and powerful. Chris has some good singing. There is one part of this song that sounds like deeper Alice In Chains singing. There is a nice pace to this song. I am loving the back up vocals on this song. I love the guitar solo towards the end of the song. This touch on the fade out for the end of the song.
Rowing starts out with a nice bass line and drums. I am loving the singing. I am loving that double vocals. This song has a folk feel to it. I love the touch on the guitar playing. The lyrics I could live without but they fit perfectly for this song. Chris is baring his soul on this song. Rowing has a nice build up to it. Kim has a nice guitar solo towards the end of the song. This is nice finish to this comeback record from Soundgarden.
Current Line Up
- Chris Cornell – Lead Vocals and Rhthm Guitar
- Kim Thyil – Lead Guitar
- Matt Cameron – Drums and Backup Vocals
- Ben Shepherd – Bass Guitar and Backup Vocals
Here is their website and twitter addresses:
In closing, I have been a fan of Soundgarden growing up. I did not like them at first and they grew on me over time. Once I understood what they were doing and they were one of the few bands that I liked back in the 1990’s along with Alice In Chains, Candlebox, Cold, and Stone Temple Pilots. I and everyone else was excited to hear they were getting back together. I was hoping they would put out some new music and here is some new music since their last record called Down On The Upside in 1996. King Animal gives the hardcore fan everything that they expect from Soundgarden. Soundgarden gives the fans and music listeners more and I am talking about a new sound we have not heard from this band. I am talking about the songs like Halfway There and Rowing. King Animal is a great comeback record and I love the direction of this great band. I am hoping they stay together and keep putting out new music. I am looking forward to seeing them live this summer. I recommend this record and let me know what you think of this new music. Go get some! Drink it! Enjoy it! Metal it! \m/
Bill DJ Weiser