Alternative rock gods Pearl Jam celebrate twenty years as one of musics most influential collectives this year with the release of their latest live compilation, Live On Ten Legs.
The band are no strangers to releasing live recordings. A bootleg series of live performances has kept a smile on many of Pearl Jam’s fans faces over the years and they have been content enough to need no more in the way of live collections however this latest reserve is a sturdy offering of some of the bands greatest pieces of work from the past twenty years as one of the worlds most adored rock heroes and truly capitalizes on the bands performance abilities.
Somewhat of a follow up and sister record to 1998’s Live On Two Legs, Live On Ten Legs is a pleasing release from its opening cover of Joe Strummer and The Mescaleros’ Arms Aloft, through Ten’s top five hit hit, Jeremy, the bass heavy and bluesy Porch and the bands monster debut single, Alive, right down to the closing fan favorite, Yellow Ledbetter.
The bands most prominent record, Ten, was clearly given the most consideration when decisions were made as to the track listing here with inclusions from the 1991 album getting the most limelight and creating an almost nostalgic, greatest hits feel to the record of when the Seattle-ites were at their peak.
Animal portrays the band at the height of their own brilliance with its guitar wailing and stadium crowd sing along that brings the atmosphere of a live Pearl Jam gig into the confines of your home with an untainted effect. Sure, the atmosphere and energy of being at one of these gigs isn’t there but its not a bad consolation prize given the quality of these recordings.
The Fixer is another highlight here. One of the more commercially hungry tracks featured on the collection, the track works well among its heavier, grunge loaded counterparts. One of the more glossy additions on the record, it boasts a slightly pop coated feel with its hook laden chorus delivery which transforms itself into one of the albums notable anthems. The track is followed up by the subdued and sentimental Nothing As It Seems which gives a versatility to the record with its laid back, acoustic approach that, hearing by the reaction of the crowd, is lovingly lapped up.
Recorded between 2003 and 2010 Live On Ten Legs isn’t so much an album for the fans but more a collection of live performances for those unwilling or too impatient to tread through the copious recordings that the band have made available since 2000. Saying this however, Live On Ten Legs boasts 18 career defining moments from one of the industry’s most celebrated bands and works well as a collection that will be pleasing to both general rock and grunge enthusiasts and avid Pearl Jam followers alike.
With twenty years of creating some of alternative rocks most influential records, Eddie Vedder and the rest of the Pearl Jam gang are well and truly a rusted in staple of all that is good and great about rock music. With 18 tracks making up Live On Ten Legs, the record proves to be a testament to a band who have hung in there for over two decades and remained one of musics pioneering outfits.
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