Monday, June 5, 2017

CD Review: "Singles" Soundtrack Still Resonates 25 Years Later With Great Music

In 1992, the world was being introduced to a new form of music that has been brewing in the Northwest corner of the U.S. The name "Grunge" was given to the alternative rock music that Seattle bands were producing in the early nineties. Bands like Nirvana, Soundgarden, Alice In Chains and Pearl Jam were making a name for themselves with albums that had a lasting impression on America's youth. One such movie gave people a glimpse of the Seattle music scene during this time. The name of the movie was "Singles" and was directed by Rolling Stone writer/editor Cameron Crowe. After tackling high school with "Fast Times At Ridgemont High" and "Say Anything," it was time for Crowe to advance on to twentysomethings and the boiling underground sound of Seattle. 

While the movie may revolve around a love story, the music is what made it timeless and to celebrate the soundtrack's 25th anniversary, Epic Soundtrax/Sony Legacy released a new expanded/deluxe edition of the album. This new release features the original soundtrack album, remastered with a second disc of outtakes, live and demos of songs for the soundtrack. It is also being released as a double-LP, which also contains a copy of the bonus disc. The original 13-song release featured unreleased music from Pearl Jam and Chris Cornell alongside classics by the Jimi Hendrix Experience and The Lovemongers (Ann & Nancy Wilson of Heart). The soundtrack also introduced the world to the music of Paul Westerberg and Screaming Trees as both artists had breakthrough singles from the album. 

The new bonus disc is what fans have been waiting for as it features unreleased music that was featured in the movie and also more music from the recently departed Chris Cornell. The new 18-track bonus addition begins with the single, "Touch Me I'm Dick" from Matt Dillon's fictional band Citizen Dick, which also featured Eddie Vedder, Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament. The next few songs are from Chris Cornell's solo EP which he recorded for the movie. It features songs like the dark, experiential  tones of "Nowhere But You" and the psychedelic acoustics of "Flutter Girl," which would latter appear on his solo album "Euphoria Morning." Live versions of the Alice In Chains songs "Would?" and "It Ain't Like That" along with Soundgarden's "Birth Ritual" that were filmed and recorded specifically for the movie, pick the energy up as these songs carry that classic grunge appeal. The second half of the bonus disc contains mostly demos and unreleased songs that were created specifically for the movie. Paul Westerberg delivers acoustic versions of "Dyslexic Heart" and "Waiting For Somebody," while Mudhoney delivers a raw version of "Overblown." The set wraps up with Mike McCready's demo instrumental "Singles Blues I" and a pair of demo pieces from Chris Cornell. To find out more about this new 25th anniversary deluxe re-issue of the "Singles" soundtrack, please visit legacyrecordings.com.

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