"Riot Act" (Sony; 2002)

Reviewed by Jeff Rogers

After releasing eighty-five live albums, Pearl Jam must have been honing their skills and finally released a studio record that most fans embraced. “Riot Act” is the album that Pearl Jam should have made a long time ago. It’s got that muscle you've wanted them to flex for oh so long.

The experimental sound is back and it feels as though it never really left; maybe it just took a vacation on “Yield.” Eddie Vedder sounds as good as he did on “Ten” and the passion that Pearl Jam rocks with makes this CD more of an comeback then a throwback. Matt Cameron must be given credit for putting new life into some of the songs.

"Riot Act" has a great flow and builds with each song. The guitar here is a little funkier than before and it's a nice, subtle but welcome change because you know Pearl Jam has real talent and it’s about time it showed itself again. 

With all the elements present, a richer sound can be heard from the group who started out as Mother Love Bone.

“Save You,” “Love Boat Captain” and “You Are” are the best tracks.

Pearl Jam: Eddie Vedder – vocals; Jeff Amet – bass; Stone Gossard – guitar; Mike McCredy – guitar; Matt Cameron – drums, percussion.

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"Yield" (Epic; 1998)

Reviewed by Jeff Rogers

Pearl Jam were riding high after releasing four blockbuster CDs with hits a plenty. So when “Yield” was released it was met with no reaction, mas o menos

Of course, it doesn’t help that this CD garnered too many ballads and didn’t rock hard enough for fans of the band's earlier music. I doubt they were trying to reach another audience and, even though it’s a solid effort, there is no meat to back up the hits they were known for.

The album is not well divided between rock and ballad and those of us who listen to an album in its entirety would find this one being ejected half way through because of its uneven flow. 

Bottom line: I would recommend you yield rather than add this to your Pearl Jam library.

The best releases are “Given To Fly” and “Do The Evolution.”

Pearl Jam: Ed Vedder - vocals; Jeff Amet - bass; Stone Gossard - guitar; Mike McCredy - guitar; Jack Irons - drums.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright © 2007 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 28 Aug 2022 15:32:20 -0400.