pearl jam. this is the album i've been waiting for. this is the album they should have made three albums ago. it' short, it's raw, it's pretty darned near perfect. there is not one false move on this amazing album. from the searing guitar riffs of world wide suicide to the organs at the end of marker in the sand to the very who-like unemployable, to the tender come back, to finally the astounding, seven minute inside job which boasts a nice piano touch, probably the clearest and most soulful singing eddie has done in ages, and results in a complete homerun to end the album.

there is so much less wandering on this album than the two previous ones. it fits much better together as an album, with the fast, harsh first half and the slower, softer second half. it's like they had a better idea of where they wanted to be on this album. more focus.

finally! they rock out! sure, some of it might be a calling back to the good old days of vs and vitalogy, but the band is showing that they've matured so much, yet still remember where their roots are. this is also probably their most politicized album to date, which is exciting. rock music that has something to say. however, at this point in time, i must say that it is all about the music, the riffs, the energy. it's like these guys are ten years younger. leaner and meaner. can't wait to see these songs performed in concert.

my only beef with the album is the inside art design. i mean, wtf? there's a picture on the inside where there's a shot of severed heads in a pile. it's like somehow rammstein's promo shots got mixed in with pearl jam's cd print. but i'm fussing over nothing. pearl jam is the most track-to-track listenable album from the band since no code.

here's a clip of the band performing world wide suicide in studio. i don't know who's idea it was to splice the performance with images of some guy dancing with a ball, but there you have it. enjoy. then buy the damned album.