Seattle-based grunge superstars Pearl Jam
will release their first-ever live album,
Pearl Jam Live On Two Legs (Nov. 24),
a 15-track record that draws from shows
during the band's recent Yield tour.
The single CD/double LP will include songs recorded during the band's summer tour in
support of its critically acclaimed fifth album, Yield, according to Annie Ohayon,
the group's publicist.
No track-listing for the set is available, according to Ohayon, who added that the title
refers to an inside joke among bandmembers.
If Pearl Jam guitarist Stone Gossard's reaction to the recent tour is any indication, the
band may have picked an optimum time in its career to go for a live album.
"It's just really been a lot of fun this time," Gossard said last summer, following the tour's
kickoff June 20 in Missoula, Mont.
Gossard said at the time that the group was getting along better than ever and playing
some of the best shows in recent memory. "Everything just feels better in terms of the old
stress," said the 32-year-old Gossard, not wanting to elaborate on the specific stresses
the group had worked out. "We've managed to figure out different ways to have a good
time on the road, and the band is getting along great."
The band's sixth album comes just 10 months after the release of Yield and
follows its first large-scale U.S. tour since the group entered into a battle against ticketing
giant Ticketmaster in 1994, based on its disapproval of the company's high fees.
The long-rumored album will feature Pearl Jam's most recent live configuration, which
includes former Soundgarden member Matt Cameron on drums. Earlier this year,
Cameron replaced former Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Jack Irons, who left the tour
due to health reasons, following dates in Hawaii and Australia.
The confirmation comes as welcome news to Pearl Jam fans -- who, through a loose
network of tape-traders, have passed around homemade concert-recordings of the band
throughout Pearl Jam's eight-year career. Pearl Jam have long allowed fans to tape live
Longtime fans, such as Caryn Rose,
webmaster of the PJ fan site "Five Horizons,"
said she hoped the release would undercut
the healthy PJ-bootleg market.
"People are paying outrageous sums of
money for really bad quality CDs," Rose said.
"Yeah, there are people who want the show they were at, but the majority of people just
want a show."
"In five or 10 years, I'm still going to be talking
about Pearl Jam in 1998, like, 'That
was the year,' or 'That was one of their
years,' " Rose added. "I love them right now
more than any other era. I've never seen
them play so well."
The album comes on the heels of the band's latest American tour, which began in
Montana in June and concluded with a show at the Coral Sky Amphitheater in West
Palm Beach, Fla., last month.
The live LP's title bears a resemblance to the Queen song "Death On Two Legs" from
the legendary glam-rock band's 1975 album, A Night At The Opera.
With the release of Yield, the
notoriously anti-commercial act seems to be
opening up from a marketing perspective.
The band filmed its first music video since
"Jeremy," which was off its debut album,
Ten. The new video is a cartoon clip
for the Yield song "Do The Evolution" (RealAudio excerpt).
Pearl Jam also recently released their first
"home video," "Single Video Theory," which
catches them in the studio during the writing
and recording of their latest album.
In August, 50,000 copies of what would have been the first live Pearl Jam album were
recalled from the stockrooms of retailer Best Buy, just three days after an ad announced
the album as an exclusive gift to those who purchased the "Single Video Theory" home
The 17-song Give Way CD was yanked from shelves after the parent company of
PJ's Epic Records label, Sony Music, filed suit
to bar the release in an L.A. court, citing
copyright infringement and unfair competition.
The official live album also will be a boon to such avid fans as Josh Wardell, 20,
webmaster for "Josh Wardell's Pearl Jam MP3 Archive," a Web warehouse of more than
300 live versions of PJ songs in the high-quality MP3 audio format. Wardell said he
thought the release -- which the band has been working on for several months,
according to Ohayon's office -- would offer a respite from the poor-quality bootlegs
created by fans.
He didn't, however, suspect it would completely kill off the bootleg market.
"For the most part, people want the show they went to, or all the shows they can possibly
collect," Wardell said. "I don't think it's going to slow down the bootlegging."