Tag Archives: 1979

Smashing Pumpkins – Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness

13 Feb

mellon-collie

After the release of their highly successful album and groundbreaking albumĀ Siamese Dream, the Smashing Pumpkins were on a roll musically, and decided that rehashing the same album wouldn’t cut it, and decided to expand their sound even more. Not only would the album feature a wider array of styles, but would be a monster sized double album with 28 tracks. After another string of hits, this album became another commercial success, being awarded with the Diamond Certification of 10 million copies shipped. Though technically it really only sold 5 million, as the RIAA counts both discs individually, a bit unfair. The success of this album gave us some more songs that are considered not only classic Smashing Pumpkins songs, but also considered classic rock, with some songs still considered radio staples. “Bullet with Butterfly Wings”, “1979”, and “Tonight Tonight” are still heard on today’s radio.

Even though Mellon Collie is a solid album with many great songs, it does have the problem many double albums have. It’s really long. With 28 tracks and two hours worth of music, to sit through its entirety is definitely reserved for someone who either has the patience, or for really long car rides. So it’s best that one listens to each disc separately. The album does have a focus on having a wide arrange of styles, and you can tell just by listening to the first three tracks that this album shows diversity. The first track, the title track, is a solo piano instrumental, then moves into the “Tonight Tonight” which features a string orchestra, and Jellybelly is an alternative metal track. There are a few songs that are psychedelic and dreamy, reminiscent of their Siamese Dream era, so coming from Siamese Dream, it won’t scare you away. There are also a couple songs that have aspects of electronic rock seeping in, with electronic drums, but the one that really shows the electronic aspect is their famous hit 1979.

Even though the album does focus on a variety of sounds, a good portion of the album does tend to fall under the typical 90’s style heavy alternative rock/alternative metal. Thanks to these types of songs, it causes the confusion for others that make them think the Pumpkins are a grunge band, especially with the Bullet With Butterfly Wings having the similar dynamic changes like Nirvana. Also with these songs, it does add some stability to the album, as sometimes having too much diversity can detract listeners, and feel either disjointed, or chaotic. It definitely tries to find a balance between being a heavily disjointed album, and from having all the songs sound too similar, as that can also be a drag for listeners.

Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness is definitely a monstrous album, and is definitely not short-changed in content. With its diversity, there is guarantee to find a track that will appeal to you. Though with its 28 songs and two hour run time, listening to its entirety is definitely not for the feint of heart.

rating 5/5

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