Monday, July 16, 2007

Zeitgeist



I shouldn't have let myself get sucked in. I just couldn't help. I had planned to simply avoid the Smashing Pumpkins "reunion" (it's hard to be a reunion when it's just Billy and drummer Jimmy Chamberlain), but Tarantula was just too awesome of a first single. I got so excited that I actually started thinking that if anyone could recreate the feel of a bygone era it would be Billy Corgan. I was wrong.

At its best, Smashing Pumpkins were blend metal brutality with soft beauty and atmospheric layers of sound. At its worst, the songs were bloated, overbearing and self-important. On Zeitgeist, the metal remains but all thoughts of melody or hooks have vanished.

What's most disappointing is that Billy Corgan, who fashions himself both a grand orchestrator and a perfectionist, has made an album that lacks any sort of direction. The production sucks. Songs sound muddy and out of balance. A good producer would have told Billy that he had missed the mark (about half the songs are Billy produced).

Tarantula is the only hit on the album. About half of the songs are listenable, but only (Come On) Let's Go really invites a repeat listen. That's the Way (My Love Is) is the one nod toward the softer sound, but sounds more like a track from Corgan's solo album than Pumpkins. With the possibile addition of Doomsday Clock, these are the only three tracks that have a chance of making it to my iPod.

Though the new record may have got me down, I won't forget the good times - as seen in the following clip:


Though I'm a little sad, I'm not as sad as this guy. He does make some good points.

1 comment:

Brian said...

Okay, I agree it is a weaker one of their albums, and the lyrics and vocals are the major weak point, but I still like some of the songs on this album. It meets my criteria of having 4 good songs to make it a 'good' album (think of how many bands out there only have one). Not their best stuff, but still better than lots of stuff out there.