Soundgarden: Back When They Were Young Pups
For a band of impressive magnitude -- an unholy sum of Chris Cornell's wails, Kim Thayil's strangely tuned, beautifully heavy guitar, and the Zeppelin/Sabbath-indebted rhythm section of bassist Ben Shepherd and drummer Matt Cameron -- Soundgarden's return from their decade plus absence has been kind of tentative. First some live shows, playing all the hits and dusting off a Badmotorfinger b-side, then a contribution to The Avengers. It took a year and a half of being into this reunion thing for Soundgarden to get blunt and definitive. We were introduced to their comeback album King Animal by way of "Been Away for Too Long," a song that awkwardly stampedes into a bland chorus repeatedly proclaiming they've, well, been away too long.
Soundgarden is both the '90s band you'd most want back and least want back, and kind of for the same reason. They left behind a pretty impeccable catalogue, and the prospect of these four guys making music together seems promising even if their genre has long since vanished.
Soundgarden perform tonight at Irving Plaza.