Review: Pearl Jam – Backspacer [2009]

Amazon PJ BSThe best rock band from the early 90’s Seattle movement is back with another exquisite listening experience on their ninth studio release Backspacer.

Once again Pearl Jam takes the unpolished rock and roll approach, a page directly from the holy book of The Ramones. For most of the record, Eddie Vedder shows he has no shame in allowing his voice to rip and roar in a slew of continuous streams that lead us all to the chapel of rock (“Gonna See My Friend,” “The Fixer”).

In addition to Backspacer’s riff-soaring tracks, several songs employ melodic breathing room (“Just Breathe,” “Amongst The Waves,” Speed of Sound”) allowing the album to flow as a work of auditory art, a rare achievement in this day and age.

The guitars of Mike McCready and Stone Gossard work their complimentary magic during “Supersonic” and “Force of Nature,” and Matt Cameron’s drums are perfect on all 11 songs as expected.

Backspacer is an improvement from 2006’s Pearl Jam, and possibly their best effort since the underrated and underappreciated Yield-Binaural era. While this is not the greatest record in the band’s repertoire nor does it offer a stunning new direction, it is always refreshing to hear rock music that is done right –Meds

4 StarsPearl Jam is Eddie Vedder (Vocals), Mike McCready (Guitars), Stone Gossard (Guitars), Jeff Ament (Bass), and Matt Cameron (Drums).

Track Listing:

  1. “Gonna See My Friend”
  2. “Got Some”
  3. “The Fixer”
  4. “Johnny Guitar”
  5. “Just Breathe”
  6. “Amongst The Waves”
  7. “Unthought Known”
  8. “Supersonic”
  9. “Speed of Sound”
  10. “Force of Nature”
  11. “The End”


Note: Pearl Jam has an exclusivity deal for this album. You are going to have to head over to Target or iTunes to buy it.


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