The vinyl release of this album lasted 20 years as the fastest selling record of all time, as of 1994, upon release, it went into millions of music cabinets around the world. Now a staple disk in any quality music fan's repertoire, Vitalogy is perhaps the album that cemented Pearl Jam into the ever present book of rock n roll that's pages are only rarely written in with permanent ink. Theirs is on the first page, along side other classics from this era like Nirvana and Alice in Chains.
That kick and punch thrashy sound that punk brought into being goes really well with the grungy yet well timed and polished riffs. America was never the same again once this selection of songs burst into their radios, and the world didn't take long to catch up. Here I am, in Great Britain, writing about how cool this album is over twenty years down the line.
Seattle was a great place to make music then, and now it still is, the name holds a resonance from this time which gives the mark of quality. It's music like this that moulded an entire generation of artists and fans to new levels of musical appreciation. With most of the bands who tour with their music, the song writing happens in the spare moments when they're not repeating the same old stuff for the stage. This third instalment to Pearl Jam's discography follows this trend, as the material came into being mostly during the V tour which occurred earlier. The energy of moving around and adoring crowds has transferred well to the record, it has a drifting appeal that only a rock star could manufacture.
“Triumphant are the angels”, it says it all, a gritty truth realisation of musical mountains, the heart has been broken, deyolked and stitched together in a Frankenstein of self discovery. Epic feels and angry angst form the revelling sounds of personal struggles and questions about life, and yet the scene is set for partying, not for feeling blue. A middle finger to the man, a party hat made of unpaid bills, and a high five for the neighbour who still calls for the cat seven weeks since he last saw it.
Pearl Jam are a band of classic proportions, we mustn't forget them. Unlike Elvis, or the Beatles, this type of classic appeals to the few, but when it hits the target, it is spot on.
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