Pearl Jam On Columbine-Inspired New Song

Pearl Jam will seek to prove that the musical spirit of Seattle remains alive and well with the release of its sixth album, "Binaural," due out on Epic Records on May 16.

As with Pearl Jam's 1998 studio effort, "Yield," much of the songwriting duties on the new record were evenly divided between all of the members of the band.

Drummer Matt Cameron even penned the music for one of the new songs, titled "Evacuation," while bassist Jeff Ament wrote the music and lyrics for several tracks, including "Nothing As It Seems," the first single from "Binaural."

During a recent sit-down with MTV News, guitarist Stone Gossard described how one of the songs he wrote for the album, "Rival," draws upon his reflections on last year's massacre at Columbine High School -- a situation made all the more complex in light of the subject matter of the band's infamous "Jeremy" video.

"[It's] kind of almost a cartoony look at male ego

and sort of anger, violence," Gossard said, "what makes people kind of snap and how people are unpredictable.

"[There was] just kind of a melody that went through my head and right after Columbine happened. It kind of maybe took on a little of that, where I put myself in the mindset or tried to think about what those guys may have been thinking the night before." [RealVideo]

Pearl Jam kicks off a North American tour supporting "Binaural" on August 3 in Virginia Beach, Virginia.