May 17

With Restraint and Caution

I must say something about that recent passing of Chris Cornell. At third orb I always like to stay positive, however when the music world loses such a talent at a relatively young age and especially unexpected, I am compelled to write.  Instead of the last few days and his recent passing, I am going to tell you about his music and help you to understand why this is such a gut punch.

I first came to hear Soundgarden with their Louder Than Love album.  I freaking loved that album and especially  Cornell's voice.  You could hear the Robert Plant influence but it was something more than just that. It was also his ability to craft songs with guitar, voice, and melody.  Their next release Badmotorfinger has not left my musical ears for more than a month at a time since it was released.  That album was just that fucking amazing. Songs like "Outshined", "Rusty Cage" and "Searching with My Good Eye Closed" will forever be listed on my list of some of the best rock music to be ever made.  Plain and Simple.

And on subsequent Soundgarden releases the quality and quantity of the depth of Chris Cornell's abilities were spectacular.  Try for instance "Burden in my Hand".

No matter who he played with his talent overshadowed everyone else.  It wasn't forced however, it was organic and natural. It just was what it was.  I remember joking to a music buddy of mine that while I like Zach De La Rocha and what Rage Against the Machine has done, I would like to hear the band playing with someone who is a more natural singer, like Chris Cornell of Soundgarden. I had to chuckle to myself when I first heard Audioslave as it was incredible music as well.  I chuckled because I guess I wasn't alone.

My point is that we lost a terrific musician and why it is such a gut punch for many of us is that from that entire "Grunge" era.  ( I always hated that fucking term for some reason) The reason why is because for many of us Chris was the pinnacle of that time.  He was the dude.  He was "that" guy.  He was the coolest.  The best voice, the best songs.  And after learning many of his songs over the years he was also a mentor.  A teacher.  One of the guys who just "get's it".

It will take some time to wrap my head around the fact that one of my biggest musical influences of that time period or even any time period is gone.  So I will leave you today with an intimate video of Chris Cornell doing what he did best.  Transporting us away to another place with brilliant music.


Leave a Reply