Pearl Jam

Release Date: March 24, 2009
Produced by: Pearl Jam and Rick Parashar
Format: 2CD/DVD



Matt Rowe


Pearl Jam set the standard very, very high with the release of their debut album, the now legendary Ten.  Issued in 1991, this album eventually went on to sell more than 12 million copies for the Seattle quintet.  That’s a feat that deserves the attention that the album is now getting as Epic Records with Legacy begins the two-year reissue campaign for the band’s catalogue.  The album is full of classic songs and is one of the unmistakable strengths of the ‘90s.  Now, Pearl Jam is a bona fide legend, and this debut is indisputable proof of that.

Aside from the excellent sound re-mastering of these original 12 tracks (by Bob Ludwig), this new set delivers a second disc of the same tracks but remixed in an ‘alternate universe’ fashion.  The second disc is referred to as Ten Redux: Remix.  These remixed songs are great to hear, and in some instances, perhaps better (“Alive”), but they remain vastly interesting shadows of the original tracks, which contain more character.  However, they add greatly to the grand scheme of this album’s new reissue, helping to create a definitive version of Ten. 

In addition to the remixes by producer, Brendan O’Brien, there are six bonus tracks.  Some are wondrous to hear.  “Brother” is a dyed in the wool classic Pearl Jam tune with all of the expected fire.  The same is said about “Just a Girl,” although I prefer “Brother” to the latter.  The remaining four are tracks of interest although none carry the same level of craft that the original works and the first two bonus cuts do.  I do thoroughly enjoy the atmosphere of smokin’ blues on “2,000 Mile Blues,” however.

The Deluxe Edition of this set adds a DVD that contains the previously unreleased DVD version of their MTV Unplugged set, which includes an added bonus of an unseen performance of “Oceans.”  This DVD is remixed in 5.1 Surround.  Devotees of the 5.1 sound have something to be excited about here. 

The Deluxe Edition is packaged in a hard-bound, book-style that contains not only the three discs (2CD/1DVD) in ‘drop-in’ sleeves, but also a 36-page, high-quality glossy stock booklet bound into the package.  The booklet possesses plenty of memorabilia, photos, credits and such that contribute greatly to such a valuable package as this.  Finally, the book is slipped-cased into a protective, hard cardboard casing with the cover art on the front, contents on the back.

The band spared no expense on this set.  It is being released in a the usual 2CD w/OCard Legacy Edition, this 2CD/1DVD Deluxe Edition (reviewed here), a 2LP set, and the Super Deluxe Edition (2CD/1DVD/4LP), and a replica cassette in a linen-covered, slip-cased clamshell box.  The cassette represents the legendary 3-track Pearl Jam demo tape, ‘Momma-Son,’ with “Alive,” “Once,” and “Footsteps.”  There are other goodies in that massive set that a hard-core Pearl Jam fan will treasure.

No one familiar with this album needs a reintroduction to it.  With over 12 million units sold, it’s a title that is well known.  This reissue of a serious classic is a no-brainer acquisition that pleases.  It’s how great music is celebrated, remembered, and better enjoyed.  This is the real thing, folks.









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212 Frech

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