The wait for new material is over! As a huge fan I was very excited to get my ears wrapped round this new track and to discover news of a forthcoming album. The track was first released as a surprise early download to active members of the band’s fan club via Ten Club’s Saturday, March 10th newsletter. It has since been released to buy via the band’s website and via all digital download and streaming services.
Having read that it was a ‘protest song’ directed at US president Donald Trump, I was interested to see how that shaped up. I wholeheartedly agree with the sentiment of course, but I have to admit I was a little disappointed overall. The trouble with being a fan of a band for 25 years is that your expectations are naturally set too high. Lyrically and musically it’s just not their best material and there is really no need for the cash register sound effects. I like the guttural vocal delivery and I can understand and appreciate the intention, I personally have no issue with bands who want to make a stand politically, but for me it needs more punch and more, well, grunge frankly.
Vedder has a big responsibility on his shoulders as one of the few remaining singers of the biggest grunge bands of the early 90s… but I find the musicianship here is also lacking and that’s such a shame because as a fan you want to have nothing but praise.
Having had a few more listens since drafting this review, it’s beginning to stick in my mind, so I am going to put this one down as a grower. I’ll await the new album in trepidation and hope that it doesn’t just get added to my collection based on being a loyal fan, but based on it being a great album.