Soundgarden Made Decibel's Hall Of Fame Right Before Chris Cornell's Death? Friday August 4 2017, 9:33 AM
The Beast
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Soundgarden Made Decibel's Hall Of Fame Right Before Chris Cornell's Death?

As many of you know, I have been an avid subscriber to Decibel magazine for many years now and often share stories I read on my shows from tidbits I read about in the magazine. It is also a great place to find info on new and upcoming bands from the underground and more extreme reaches of the metal circuit. Now I have to admit, even though I was a Soundgarden fan back in the early 90s when they emerged in my world, watching Head Bangers Ball on MTV with the likes of Pantera, Metallica, Slayer, Alice In Chains, Nirvana and more. It seemed kind of strange to see them on the front cover of my fav metal magazine in 2017. At the same time it kind of made sense as it did back in the 90s.

I remember showing the magazine to my wife and laughing saying "hey look, remember Soundgarden? They are on this months front cover of Decibel and made the hall of fame in the magazine!" So I sat down, read the article and instantly was influenced to go listen to some old school Soundgarden and blast it loud, relive those memories from my teens and all of that. I noticed right away that Soundgardens heavy doomy riffs and melody's really fits in with a lot f music I listen to now days, especially doom and stoner rock.

Anyway, a couple weeks later Chris Cornell is all over the news after committing apparent suicide?
Now the thing that is even stranger about the Decibel Hall Of Fame induction is that they have a common rule for all albums inducted. All members on the specific record must be alive to be interviewed for the article.....
Is it a coincidence that this strange induction just happened like this a few weeks before Chris Cornell left this planet or what? - The Zach Moonshine Show

The Decibel Hall of Fame provides the definitive stories behind the making of extreme music’s most important albums. Each month the seven-page stories (upwards of 5,000 words) include interviews with every musician who performed on the inducted record.

Decibel Hall of Fame No. 150 - Posted May 1, 2017 

The induction of any Soundgarden album into the Decibel Hall of Fame has not been an easy one. Ideally, this should have happened before Tad’s 8-Way Santa, as there’s no disputing that Soundgarden was a key grunge progenitor—going as far back as the mid-’80s—long before Tad Doyle and his crew were on the scene. But, as any longtime Decibel readers know, deciding to enshrine an album and actually making it happen, doesn’t always work out easily, or sometimes ever. Suffice to say, Soundgarden has been under discussion for years.

The recent Sub Pop reissue of the freshly remixed Ultramega OK (originally released by SST in 1988) offered a golden opportunity to approach the topic once again. This album, after all, was where Soundgarden revealed its metallic ambitions. Previous Sub Pop EPs, Screaming Life and Fopp, hinted at the heaviness the band was capable of, but this was the album that saw the band pivot toward the punk- and post-punk-informed Sabbathy sludge that would soon rocket them to multiplatinum sales. The solidified quartet of drummer Matt Cameron, bassist Hiro Yamamoto, vocalist/guitarist Chris Cornell and guitarist Kim Thayil was firing on all cylinders, with all four participating in the writing process in meaningful ways for the first time.

Ultramega OK, however, is an admittedly controversial pick to be enshrined. While there’s no denying the impact of songs like “Flower,” “Incessant Mace,” “Beyond the Wheel,” “All Your Lies,” “Nazi Driver” and “Head Injury,” the original release was marred by a thin, muddy and compressed recording—courtesy of Drew Canulette—that the band was completely unsatisfied with. Immediately upon its release, there were plans to remix it. But, because fate and fame interceded, it was put on the back burner. Soundgarden soon signed to A&M, went back into the studio to record its major label debut Louder Than Love, and UMOK was left behind.

The Sub Pop reissue, faithfully remixed and restored by the Godfather of Grunge Jack Endino, allows us to appreciate the quality of this remarkable album without the distraction of the original, sonically neutered version. UMOK was always a great album—the first true indication of Soundgarden’s range and musical prowess—but the remixed version illuminates just how impactful this material was. Indeed, the band itself ultimately felt strongly enough about UMOK that it undertook the painstaking process—nearly 30 year later—of making it sound how it was originally intended. And, in light of Soundgarden’s incredibly successful career, that speaks volumes.

– Adem Tepedelen


Got to get more Soundgarden? To read the entire seven-page story, featuring interviews with all members on   Ultramega OK , purchase the   print issue from our store , or digitally via our app for   iPhone/iPad  or   Android . Via Decibel Magazine

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