Seattle’s finest in grunge rock, Soundgarden, make a triumphant return this month with the release of a definitive greatest hits collection titled Telephantasm.
Soundgarden have been a popular staple in the grunge genre since their formation back in 1984 and over their 13 year career the band had raked up sales in excess of twenty million before deciding to disband at the height of their popularity in 1997. With the brain and powerfully distinctive vocals of front-man Chris Cornell, the band have recently reformed after an equally lengthy absence with a promise of new new material. The band have also recently hit the road again with successful performances at Lollapolooza, Reading and Leeds Festivals, all being met with fan approval.
While Nirvana still reigns supreme in terms of success and musical longevity, Soundgarden are almost looked at as semi pioneers in the rock grunge genre that Seattle is so famous for churning out by the bucketful.
While over the past few years we have seen a massive increase in bands of all genres coming out of hiding to bleed the last drops of success from their yesteryear heyday, with the likes of Guns and Roses, Alice and Chains, Pearl Jam, Motley Crue and Skunk Anansie all proving it can be done well, Soundgarden have paced themselves. Instead of rushing into things halfheartedly, the band have now released a greatest hits collection which sums up Soundgarden rather perfectly over a 2CD set. Telephantasm features all of the bands successes as well as some rare numbers and a single new track in the form of Black Rain, an almost teaser of what’s to be expected from new Soundgarden material to be heard in the near future.
All of the hits are showcased on this retrospective including Superunknown, My Wave and Dusty all showing face.
The collection also features some rare live additions with Get On The Snake, Jesus Christ Pose and Pretty Noose all getting worthwhile attention offering undated nostalgia of when Soundgarden were in their prime.
Spoonman and Fell on Black Days, top ten hits for the band, are thrown among the track-listing as well as the minor successes, Outshined and Rusty Cage.
Black Sabbath-esque Beyond The Wheel is a foot on the pedal stormer that offers a heavy dose of guitar wailings.
The live version of Blow Up The Outside World is one of the highlights on the record. The dark chorus is well rendered to the almost Beatles style verse melody and the bands performance of the track only adds further justification to the success that Soundgarden reaped during the nineties and why these guys are considered one of the true greats that Seattle’s buzzing music world have bestowed on us.
Probably the bands most iconic and commercially successful number, Black Hole Sun, also has to be given a thorough mention here. The band were at the height of their success with the release of 1996’s Down On The Upside when this one was released. Commercially, the song was the biggest hit from Soundgarden’s catalogue, hitting number twelve in the UK and topping the charts over in the US.
Telephantasm is not your average greatest hits collection. A lot of thought and consideration as to what tracks to add has been applied here. Sure, the commercial hits all get the big nod from fans and critics alike however with the addition of numerous live numbers, a fantastic new track inclusion and also some rare and unreleased gems, Telephantasm is a must have for not only Soundgarden fans, but also for aficionado’s of credible and well crafted music.
Telephantasm is a celebrated and historic collection from one of grunge’s definitive catalogues that sees a welcome return for Soundgarden to the mainstream arena once again. It may have been 13 years since we last heard from these guys but with Black Rain already proving to be a chart success, the hype around one of the genres best loved bands is about to get a glossy makeover for existing followers and a new era of music lovers.
::: RenownedForSound.com’s Editor and Founder –
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