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    Pearl Jam - Lightning Bolt

    Pearl Jam - Lightning Bolt


    Looking to steer Pearl Jam towards a fifth No. 1 in their 22-year career is ‘Lightning Bolt’, the band’s second release on Monkeywrench, which sees them really start to enjoy the freedom of putting out music on their own label.

    Apart from Cameron who is currently pulling double duty with Soundgarden, writing credits are shared out across the group which helps to give each track an identity of its own. Vedder’s hardcore influences are prevalent throughout ‘Mind Your Manners’ while elements of his solo work shine through on the morosely acoustic ‘Sleeping by Myself’. Gossard’s country heritage emanates from 'Let the Records Play' while Ament’s dynamic bass brings home the bitter ‘My Father’s Son’. Finally Pearl Jam’s classic rock backbone Mike McCready delivers one of the finest tracks on the album in the heartfelt, piano-embellished ‘Sirens’. For most bands, this ambitious range of styles would end up as a mish-mash of sounds that refuse to blend, but for a group that has spent many years and many more miles on the road together, ‘Lightning Bolt’ all comes together with the seemingly impossible fluidity that helps define alternative rock’s favourite sons.


    Bringing the album to a close is the beautifully sincere ‘Future Days’, which shows Pearl Jam ten albums in and at last truly comfortable in their own skin, ready to explore a new chapter in their career.


     

    Nick Malone ||


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