grunge lives! (at least in retrospect)

6a00c2251fe8738fdb00d09e6cd6f4be2b-500pi.jpgContinuing my examination of the music styles, albums and artists which I like, I have returned to the much maligned era of grunge. Thought it was once popular throughout the 1990s, grunge did not outlive other music genres and it received a big blow with the passing of Nirvana lead singer Kurt Cobain. I remember talking to a friend at a party telling him that Kurt was like John Lennon for our generation, he was that important musically and it was tragic that he died so suddenly like Lennon and like other musicians who died young like Janis Joplin or Jimmy Hendrix.

At any rate, the grunge era did produce one of my all time favorite soundtracks. Of course, I am talking about the Singles soundtrack. Maybe the movie wasn’t as successful but the soundtrack was a grunge fan’s dream featuring a smorgasbord of grungy goodness including songs from artists I normally wouldn’t give two cents for.

It opens with Alice in Chain’s “Would” and if you were a fan of this band but got sick of “Man in the Box” and other songs then this is a refreshing alternative. As a testament to Pearl Jam’s popularity there isn’t one, but two of their songs included. Frankly, I am bored by everything Pearl Jam has to offer post 1991 and their brilliant “Ten” album but the songs here are an exception, “State of Love and Trust” being an exceptional rocker and my absolute favorite PJ song of that era.

Other treats include “Chloe/Dancer Crown of Thorns,” a little gem by the defunct grunge pioneers Mother Love Bone and the surprisingly haunting and beautiful Chris Cornell offering, a little song called “Seasons.” Even the Heart (going by the name of Lovemongers) cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Battle of Evermore” is well done and dare I say, every bit as good as the original.

This soundtrack is rife with bands left over from the transition of heavy metal to grunge days like Mudhoney, Soundgarden, The Screaming Trees and even The Smashing Pumpkins. It’s like a time capsule ready to explode with nostalgic sonic power. One of my all time favorites.

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