This is album that inspired me to pick up a guitar and learn to play. This is the album that showed me just how emotionally engaging songs can be – I heard it once and I had to know how to play it – how did they make those sounds? How did they get that power into the ballads? HOW HOW HOW?? Billy Corgan is how. His is the principle pretty much everything outside of Jimmy Chamberlain who was the drummer, this 2nd album of the Chicago based band (their previous “Gish” is an indy cult album), ‘Siamese Dream’ came along in 1993 during the times when the alt rock explosion happened.. Seattle act Nirvana’s “Nevermind” was dominating the charts while another band Pearl Jam were enjoying huge success with an album called “Ten”. Whereas those bands stuck to power chord driven rock stylings, the Pumpkins opted for darker, full chord and harmonic driven songs – some epically showing the depressed and angst ridden heart of the band that had been placed under so much pressure to deliver a commercial hit from their new label ‘Virgin’. And Boy Did They..
Love him or hate him, Billy Corgans’ almost tyrannical dominance over the songwriting in the band (he pretty much writes everything) led to him essentially working on most of this album by himself and with Butch Vig (producer) as D’arcy (Bassist) and James Iha (Rhythm guitar) were either not hitting the level he needed or were pissed off at him. But, as they say, if he wasn’t like that we wouldn’t have this album.
SIAMESE DREAM goes down as a dateless album, it will never age, and its a complete work – one of those albums that when a song finishes you’re all revved up for the next one to start – this isn’t a bunch of singles dumped on a CD – it’s a complete album. Showcasing classics such as: Cherub Rock (the anti NYC Indy Scene Song), Today (Happy Suicide Song), Hummer (Big Chunky Wanderlust Song), Rocket (The 1st track written for it), Disarm (the BBC Banned Heartbreaker), Geek U.S.A. (Ball Tearing Angst Rock), Mayonaise (Their greatest song ever) and Luna (The wispy love note at the end) – there’s so much to devour here!
SIAMESE DREAM is the Smashing Pumpkins best album – and you must have it!
SIAMESE DREAM has been re-released remastered and its is a triumphant joy to hear and to love it as much now as I did back then! GET INTO IT!