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"Alternative" Music anyone?

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  • Jerico
    Champion of the Balance
    • Jan 2004
    • 1577

    "Alternative" Music anyone?

    Recently was the anniversary of Kurt Cobain's death.

    If I heard correctly on the news, there's a new book
    that claims Kurt Cobain's death was NOT the result
    of a suicide but instead, homicide.
    What's worse, I believe in the book,
    the authors argue
    that Courtney Love-- embittered by the threat
    of divorce-- is the primary suspect.

    Does anyone care? Anyone have any input?
    \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
    Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview
  • Omaru
    Denizen of Moo Uria
    • Dec 2003
    • 185

    I could give some input on it, but the whole media circus aspect of things like this tends to turn me off enough to not want to think about it. Besides I don't care a whole lot, I listened to Nirvana but it was never as important to me as it was to some people back then. For what it's worth I think it probably was a homicide. The circumstances were always a bit too iffy, and some of the evidence I've heard about seems to really lend itself to that interpretation. So far as Courtney's involvement, I definitely wouldn't rule it out. That is one crazy bitch. But that's about all I have to say.


    • flamingo
      Nomad of the Time Streams
      • Jan 2004
      • 42

      I think it likely that he committed suicide. The words of Kurt Cobains songs are very depressing at times. I like the Nirvana Unplugged CD the best.
      :-) flamingo


      • PsychicWarVeteran
        Flesh Bag of Mostly Water
        • Mar 2004
        • 2554

        I'm afraid I'm rather opinionated on this one and I am going to try to refrain from regurgitating all the evidence that is available out there, but suffice it to say it sure looks like she killed him. Hasn't been proven and it's just my opinion...

        For those of you who are into reading official documents:

        Rest in peace, Kurt.
        "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
        --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars


        • Jerico
          Champion of the Balance
          • Jan 2004
          • 1577

          Yeah. I think it's possible that she may have done it.
          but I haven't read the whole story, I intend to at some point.
          \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
          Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview


          • Jimm
            Nomad of the Time Streams
            • Feb 2004
            • 33

            There's really no time in my life to be concerned with anything Rolling Stone and Mtv are concerned with. The real question is, how can we live in a world without Shawn Lane?



            • krunky
              Eternal Companion
              • Jan 2004
              • 726

              I knew Courtney back in the day. I wanted to ask her out because she was just my type of trashy, crazy blonde. The friend through which I knew her talked me out of it though. ::sigh::

              We went to the movies in a group once - the remake of "Night of the Living Dead." She went her way with that tall, pasty-faced friend of hers, I went my own way with my pals. Never saw her again to my knowledge. Maybe once more at a White Zombie show in L.A. or some Jabberjaw event?

              Now she looks like a freak - what happened to the trashy girl next door that I knew? Only many thousands of dollars of plastic surgery can make a person look that divorced from their own humanity.

              I think I have read about the death scene discrepancies, and yeah she looks good for a murder charge. It could have been some sicko assisted suicide thing too. Drug addicts are a pain in the arse that way - anything could have happened really.

              Does she seem like she's enjoying herself? In my opinion, not really...


              • PsychicWarVeteran
                Flesh Bag of Mostly Water
                • Mar 2004
                • 2554

                Originally posted by krunky
                Drug addicts are a pain in the arse that way - anything could have happened really.
                I agree. That's going to be the problem getting to the truth. A lot of Courtney's crazy, suspicious crap can be explained away by her (and Kurt's) drug abuse.
                "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
                --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars


                • Guest's Avatar

                  Here's something I wrote for music class

                  no time to fix the formatting right now... but

                  Soundgarden: آ The Ultimate Rock Band
                  by LoE

                  آ  آ Although Nirvana is more commonly associated with the word "grunge,"
                  Soundgarden preceeded them as pioneers of the Seattle rock scene which dominated
                  the charts in the early '90s. آ Indeed, Soundgarden (along with Nirvana,
                  Mudhoney, and Tad) created the Seattle grunge sound characterized by loud, heavily
                  distorted and down-tuned electric guitars, thumping bass, and unrelentingly
                  pummeled drums, along with an uncompromising Punk Rock ethos, yet musically
                  diverse enough to often be dynamic, sometimes with unusual non-common time
                  signatures. آ Soundgarden (moniker taken from a Seattle art sculpture) was a quartet--
                  consisting of frontman, lead vocalist, and lyrical mastermind, Chris Cornell;
                  lead guitarist, Kim Thayill; low-register bass rhythm master, Ben Shepherd; and
                  syncopation guru and skin-smasher, Matt Cameron-- collectively forming one of
                  the best, most talented conventional rock bands in history.
                  آ  آ Soundgarden started putting out records in 1985 on the Seattle
                  independent label, Sup Pop, while declining offers from major labels for a long time. آ 
                  Musical integrity was always important to them, and even early in their
                  career, they understood that being on a major label can be a "double-edged sword." آ 
                  Major labels offer a lot of money, but often times musical freedom is
                  restricted because of the opinions and pressures that the major label executives tend
                  to put on musicians. آ Thus, Soundgarden decided to put out their first
                  full-length album, Ultramega OK, on indie label, SST Records (in 1988). آ When they
                  finally signed to A&M Records, a major label that satisfied their
                  insistence on musical freedom, they released Louder Than Love in 1989, in which
                  Soundgarden subsequently increased their fan-base with rigorous touring, and video
                  promotion on MTV.
                  آ  آ If it is said that Rock 'n Roll originated in the 1950's, then
                  Soundgarden, born in the mid-eighties, was in an interesting time period since they
                  could be inspired by a plethora of bands that had come into existence since Rock
                  music's birth. آ Not only was Soundgarden influenced by early heavy
                  metal like Led-Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, and Rush, but also by Punk Rock like The
                  Stooges and MC 5, as well as more experimental projects as those by Frank Zappa
                  or the band King Crimson. آ In fact, early on in their longer-than-a-decade
                  existence, Soundgarden was labelled as "art metal" by at least one music
                  journalist (in Pulse! Magazine). آ The most salient features early on besides the loud
                  distorted guitars was Chris Cornell's chosen style of singing: آ a lot of the
                  notes were sung in the falsetto part of his register, always sounding harsh
                  and raw, falsetto or not. آ It seemed that he was going for a very visceral
                  style-- a "if Led-Zeppelin was a punk rock band" kind of approach. آ The music could
                  be described in this manner for the first two albums. آ By the time the third
                  and fourth albums came, Badmotorfinger (1991) and Superunknown (1994)
                  respectively, their videos were common place on MTV, and the band members were
                  stalwarts on tour. آ Their music became more accessible as Cornell chose to sing often
                  in a more conventional sounding, bluesy style.
                  آ  آ One of the strong points of Soundgarden's music is the lyrics of Chris
                  Cornell. آ Obviously influenced by Jim Morrison of The Doors, Cornell's lyrics
                  more often than not mirror Morrison's melancholic, poetic, and metaphorical
                  style. آ Even early on, Cornell's lyrics had an intelligence about them. آ Be the
                  lyrics self-reflective or metaphoric, they were always thought-provoking. آ One
                  song on Louder Than Love, called "Hands All-Over" is socially conscious--
                  reflecting on how mankind's industrialism has deleterious effects on the Earth:

                  آ  Hands all over coastal waters. The crewmen thank her, then lay down their
                  oily blanket.
                  آ  Hands all over the inland forest. آ In a striking motion, trees fall down l
                  dying soldiers.
                  آ  آ Got my arms around, baby brother. آ Put your hands away. آ Gonna kill your
                  mother. آ Kill your mother. آ And I love her.

                  Irony is a common theme in Chris Cornell's lyrics. آ The title of the song
                  alone in "Slaves and Bulldozers" from Badmotorfinger alludes to a comparison and
                  contrast. آ It evokes the image of a child playing with a toy in a sand box
                  (innocence) while grown up construction workers bulldoze land to build a new
                  corporate structure (loss of innocence):

                  آ Every word I said is what I mean; everything I've held is what I've freed;
                  everything I've shown is what I feel.
                  آ  Virgin eyes and dirty looks on what I have and why I took. آ Counting all
                  the hands I shook. آ Now I know why you've been shaking... آ Now I know why
                  you've been shaking...
                  آ  So bleed your heart out. آ There's no more rides for free. آ Bleed your
                  heart out. آ I said... what's in it for me? آ  What's in it for me...

                  Perhaps what is most common in Cornell's lyrics is the sense of melancholy
                  and foreboding. آ Like any intelligent person, he is prone to depression, and his
                  lyrics act in catharsis. آ His lyrical style has been compared to the poetry
                  of Edgar Allen Poe. آ The song "Zero Chance"-- from the latest and last
                  Soundgarden album Down On the Upside (1996)-- offers an alternative in introspection:

                  آ Think I know the answer. آ Stumbled on and all the world... fell down. آ And
                  all the sky went silent. آ Cracked like glass and slowly tumbles to the ground.
                  آ They say if you look hard. آ Find your way back home. آ Born without a
                  friend. آ And bound to die alone.

                  آ Why doesn't anyone believe in loneliness? آ Stand up and everyone will see
                  your holiness.
                  آ They say if you look hard. آ Find your way back home. آ Born without a
                  friend. آ And bound to die alone.

                  آ  آ In 1994, when Soundgarden released Superunknown, they had reached the
                  pinnacle of their career. آ The much anticipated album featured a multi-million
                  dollar producer Mike Beinhorn, and it quickly went platinum. آ It is arguably one
                  of their most diverse and best albums. آ It was the first time there was an
                  obvious Beatles influence, evident in the apocalyptic and psychedelic themed hit
                  song, "Black Hole Sun." آ The song featured a leslie type of guitar effect,
                  reminiscent of the keyboards in "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds." آ Later that
                  year they ended up winning the Grammy award for "Best Metal" band. آ It was more
                  ironic than jubilant for the band. آ The resounding sentiment among the
                  bandmates was similar to that to punk rocker, Henry Rollins when he won the same
                  grammy award. آ He said, "Metal? آ I'm about as 'metal' as my mother!"
                  آ  آ Musicians and musicologists best know Soundgarden for their
                  "manipulation" of the guitar. آ Standard guitar tuning normally-- from high thin string to
                  low fat string-- is E B G D A E. آ Throughout their entire discography, have
                  used at least a dozen alternate tunings from the norm on their various
                  compositions. آ Alternate tunings include (from low string to high string): آ C G D G B E
                  and C G C G G E. آ Both of these weird tunings add a significantly lower (bass)
                  register because the low normally "E" string is dropped two whole steps lower
                  than usual. آ The former alternate tuning was used on two compositions: آ "Limo
                  Wreck" and "Mailman" from Superunkown. آ "C G D G B E" retains standard guitar
                  tuning on the top four strings, allowing the musician to play everything
                  already learned in normal playing, and the ability to play power chords with only
                  one finger on the two bass strings (which is not possible on standard tuning)
                  because they are tuned in 5ths in relation to each other. آ This tuning has
                  been used previously by Lindsey Buckingham on "Never Going Back Again" and
                  Christopher Parkening on his arrangement of Bach's "Sheep May Safely Graze." آ The
                  latter tuning, C G C G G E, آ is used in songs that are conventional in
                  structure, in that the measures consist mostly of chord progressions as opposed to
                  melodies, but the unusual tuning serves to obtain an unusual tonicity in the
                  guitar. آ "C G C G G E" tuning is an open C tuning in that all the strings without
                  touching them, play notes from a C major chord (C E G), differing only slightly
                  from the traditional open C tuning (C G C G C E). آ Because the second and
                  third strings are in unison, there is an overall different tonicity than normal.
                  آ  آ Two more alternate guitar tunings are worth mentioning: آ Drop D tuning,
                  and the All E tuning (E E E E E E). آ Drop D tuning is the most simple of
                  alternate tunings because only one string the low E is manipulated, dropped down to
                  D, such that the two low bass strings are a 5th apart. آ Thus the tuning is D A
                  D G B E, and one-finger power chords can be played on the bass strings. آ This
                  is a popular tuning widely used by contemporary hard rock bands. آ This tuning
                  was used in many Soundgarden songs. آ Only standard tuning was used in more
                  songs. آ The All E tuning has to be one of the weirdest deviations from standard
                  tuning. آ The 5th string is tuned down to match the 6th string, and the 4th
                  string is tuned up an octave higher than the two low E's, the 3rd string is tuned
                  down to match the 4th string, and the 2nd string is tuned up to match the 1st
                  string-- a very radical tuning, so it's not surprising that only one song
                  used it: آ "Mind Riot" from Badmotorfinger.
                  آ  آ Perhaps the reason Soundgarden was able to be experimental and yet able
                  to have a mass appeal, and not considered "weird" or "avant garde" is because,
                  despite all the unusual guitar tunings and other unconventional things they
                  did, they retained basic rock 'n roll standards in their song structures. آ To be
                  more specific, most rock songs throughout history are written in a "verse to
                  chorus to verse" type of stucture in a 4/4 time signature (common time), with
                  a middle-eight section where guitar soloing occurs. آ This is basically how
                  Soundgarden writes their songs. آ As long as they retain that basic formula (for
                  the most part), it has a natural sound to listeners, no matter if they "tweak"
                  the guitar tuning, omit having a guitar solo, or stray from common time for a
                  bit. آ The fact that they do stray from normal conventions in subtle ways is
                  why they are lauded for being true artists who write music in their own unique
                  آ  آ To exemplify departures from 4/4 time signature, the songs "Outshined"
                  from Badmotorfinger, and "Limo Wreck" from Superunknown can be considered. آ 
                  "Outshined" is in 7/4. آ It can be thought of as a 4 + 3 count (1-2-3-4-5-6-7). آ If
                  you play the main riff on guitar, you can just do it by ear and feel,
                  because, although it's an odd time signature, it is very "natural" sounding. آ Drummer
                  Matt Cameron once stated in an interview, "When we write a phrase, we usually
                  don't know what the time signature it's in. آ We just come up with what sounds
                  natural to us. آ Later on, after having written the song we can then go back
                  and count and figure out what the time signature is."
                  آ  آ The doomy, gloomy and Black Sabbath sounding song "Limo Wreck" features
                  two non-common time signatures: 12/8 and 15/8. آ The riffs played in these time
                  signatures are slow and ominous. آ The intro riff of this song is actually
                  reminiscent of both Rush and Black Sabbath. آ It contains a tritone (B-flat to آ E
                  to E-flat to A-flat to G)-- which is useful in obtaining an "evil" type of
                  sound-- and also uses harmonics like Alex Lifeson of Rush often did. آ Such
                  incorporation of musicality into rock music show the sheer brilliance of Soundgarden.
                  آ  آ In summary, Soundgarden, inspired by a variation of great rock music,
                  combined many elements, both conventional and unconventional, to formulate their
                  own style of rock music. آ  The artistic desire to incorporate unusual ideas
                  into a rock 'n roll context, allowed them to become one of the most critically
                  acclaimed bands in history. آ They utilized alternate guitar tunings and time
                  signatures in a way to make very memorable songs unique to themselves. آ 
                  Unfortunately though, Soundgarden broke up soon after releasing their 5th album, while
                  still on the crest of a wave of success. آ There were rumors of fighting, but
                  that's the norm for bands. آ What ultimately brought an end to Soundgarden was
                  a sense of integrity. آ It was very possible for them to continue on for many
                  more years having achieved critical success and a large fan-base, but instead
                  of continuing on that road where bands-- although initially fresh and
                  evolving-- eventually become "dinosaurs" and shadows of their initial novelty. آ 
                  Instead of facing that certainty, they chose to call it quits while on top. آ 
                  Because of that, Soundgarden can be considered one of the best rock bands in the
                  history of the world.


                  • Guest's Avatar

                    As mucha s I love Soundgarden (I think Cornell is the greatest singer ever)-even they admit they owe a huge debt to Jane's Addiction, without whom SG would never have felt so free to do what they did.



                    • Jerico
                      Champion of the Balance
                      • Jan 2004
                      • 1577

                      I thought Soundgarden came first?

                      As the essay said, they started in the mid-80's.
                      From what I know, Jane's came in the late 80's.
                      Well, not much difference; they been around about
                      the same time.
                      Jane's is LA, Soundgarden pioneers in the Seattle scene.

                      In SG, I thought there was a natural progression
                      the song-writing in each successive album.
                      There was never a point where they sounded
                      \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
                      Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview


                      • Jules
                        Eternal Companion
                        • Jan 2004
                        • 609

                        What about Mudhoney??


                        • Jimm
                          Nomad of the Time Streams
                          • Feb 2004
                          • 33

                          They put out their first recordings within months of each other. They were bar contemporaries. I'm basing my points mostly on comments by Cornell in the recent Jane's cover story in SPIN magazine (My god I actually bought a SPIN magazine *gasp*-but it told you everything you ever wanted to know about Jane's.

                          Everyone got Cornell's Euphoria Morning? It's SOoo much better than Audioslave. GOD I hate Rage against the Machine.



                          • Jimm
                            Nomad of the Time Streams
                            • Feb 2004
                            • 33

                            Originally posted by Jerico

                            In SG, I thought there was a natural progression
                            the song-writing in each successive album.
                            There was never a point where they sounded
                            THIS is what makes SG the greatest band in the world. Never a wasted note. Never a bit of filler. Every recorded second counts. Not many bands can say that.
                            I thought Jane's was better art overall, and I never thought they had a stagnant moment till the new one, which is for the most part an excellent album.



                            • Jerico
                              Champion of the Balance
                              • Jan 2004
                              • 1577

                              Euphoria Morning has more complex musicianship. Alain J. is obviously more of a guitar virtuoso than Tom Morello, but sometimes a more simple rock structure is just as good. Audioslave often has a more raw AC/DC type approach only without the trite guitar soloing and better singing.
                              Euphoria Morning is definitely a strong album throughout. It's too bad no one knows about it.
                              I dunno what happened. There wasn't enough promotion? People weren't ready for Cornell doing non-rock? Listen to "When I'm Down." I believe that's the song he considers his "R&B" influenced song. Even though, it's a very good song. One of my favs off of it.
                              Euphoria morning, just as Temple of the Dog and later SG Superunknown really shows how Cornell is truly a student of music and shows what he is capable of doing with his voice.
                              \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
                              Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview