Mad Season ¦ Above

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Veröffentlichung Above:

1995

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Above auf Wikipedia (oder andere Quellen):

Above
Above (Mad Season album).jpeg
Studio album by
ReleasedMarch 14, 1995
RecordedWinter 1994
StudioBad Animals Studio, Seattle, Washington
Genre
Length55:36
LanguageEnglish
LabelColumbia
ProducerBrett Eliason, Mad Season
Mad Season chronology
Above
(1995)
Live at the Moore
(1995)
Singles from Above
  1. River of Deceit
    Released: March 27, 1995
  2. I Don’t Know Anything
    Released: 1995
  3. Long Gone Day
    Released: 1995

Above is the only studio album by the American rock band Mad Season, released on March 14, 1995, through Columbia Records. Above peaked at No. 24 on the Billboard 200 chart. The album has been certified gold by the RIAA in the United States. Layne Staley created the artwork on the album cover and inside the inlay.

Background

During the production of Pearl Jam’s Vitalogy, guitarist Mike McCready went into rehabilitation in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he met John Baker Saunders, who would a short while later become bassist in The Walkabouts.[4] In 1994, when the two returned to Seattle, they formed a side band with Screaming Trees drummer Barrett Martin. Immediately the trio set up rehearsal time together and began writing material. McCready then brought in friend and Alice in Chains frontman Layne Staley to round out the line-up. McCready had hoped that being around sober musicians would push Staley to get himself sober.[5]

Recording

The album was recorded in 1994 at Bad Animals Studio in Seattle, Washington. The band worked with producer Brett Eliason, who had previously worked with McCready as Pearl Jam’s sound engineer. The album was mixed by Eliason.

The music for the songs „Wake Up“ and „River of Deceit“ came out of rehearsals that the group had before Staley joined. The song „Artificial Red“ came together at a show that the band had at the Crocodile Café in October 1994. The songs „Lifeless Dead“ and „I Don’t Know Anything“ were first premiered on Pearl Jam’s January 8, 1995 Self-Pollution satellite radio broadcast, a four-and-a-half-hour-long pirate broadcast out of Seattle which was available to any radio stations that wanted to carry it.[6] McCready said, „We did all the Mad Season music in about seven days. It took Layne just a few more days to finish his vocals, which was intense since we only rehearsed twice and did four shows. So this has been the most spontaneous thing I’ve ever been involved in. This was done even quicker than Temple of the Dog which took about four weeks... With Mad Season we just went in and started jamming on tunes and everybody had ideas and it just happened with three or four days.“[4]

McCready said, „I told [Staley]... ‚You do what you want, you write all the songs and lyrics. You’re the singer.‘ He’d come in, and he’d do these beautiful songs.“[5] During the making of the album, Staley read The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran. Martin said, „Layne Staley felt as though he was on a spiritual mission through his music. Not a rock mission, a spiritual mission.“[7]

Music and lyrics

McCready described the songs on the album as „some jazzy stuff, some blues, some arena rock.“[4] Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic said that the album „sounds like a cross between Alice in Chains and Pearl Jam, taking the ponderous seriousness of Alice and PJ’s ’90s update of winding ’70s guitar rock.“[8]I Don’t Know Anything“’s verse bar features a droning, overdriven guitar melody centered on the use of harmonics. „Long Gone Day“ takes influence from genres as diverse as jazz, progressive rock, classic rock, and blues. Saxophonist Skerik contributes to the song.

Staley is credited for writing all the lyrics on the original release within the liner notes of the 2013 deluxe issue.[9] As was the case with much of his work with Alice in Chains, Staley’s lyrics dealt with his struggle against addiction as well as other personal troubles. Lyrically, much of „River of Deceit“ was inspired by Khalil Gibran’s The Prophet.[9] Vocalist Mark Lanegan of Screaming Trees contributes guest vocals on „I’m Above“ and „Long Gone Day“; he is also credited for co-writing the music to those tracks along with McCready and Martin.[9] Lanegan also wrote the lyrics for the three bonus tracks on disc 1 of the deluxe issue - „Locomotive“, „Black Book of Fear“, and „Slip Away“.[9] R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck is credited for co-writing the music to „Black Book of Fear“ along with McCready, Martin, Saunders, and Lanegan.[9]

Release and reception

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic[8]
ConsequenceB+[10]
Entertainment WeeklyC[11]
Melody Makerfavorable[12]
Pitchfork(4.6÷10)[13]
Rolling Stone[14]

Above received mostly positive reviews from music critics and was very well received by grunge fans, but some critics pointed out the album’s flaws. Despite some negative criticism, the album was a moderate commercial success. Over the course of 1995, Above scaled the Billboard 200 album chart eventually peaking at number 24. Above has been certified gold by the RIAA.[15]

Melody Maker called the album „a Country Sabbath combination“ and „a refreshing holiday from the pressures of corporate ultra-stardom.“[12] AllMusic staff writer Stephen Thomas Erlewine gave the album three out of five stars, saying that „the album meanders without much direction, yet there are flashes of invention, particularly in Staley’s work, with McCready contributing a few tasty licks.“[8] Rolling Stone staff writer Barbara Davies gave Above two and a half out of five stars but was later changed to a more positive three out of five stars, saying that Mad Season „take artistic risks and set out to make something fresh on Above.“ However, she criticized the album for having a „hit-or-miss quality.“ Davies ended the review by stating that „the band is—at times—more than the mere sum of its parts.“[14] Chuck Eddy of Entertainment Weekly gave the album a C. He said, „A sax solo and zooming guitars provide momentary relief, but most Mad Season sludge is unbearably immobile.“ He ended by saying, „It’s big trouble when one of the most upbeat songs is called ‚Lifeless Dead‘.“[11]

Above included the singles „River of Deceit“, „I Don’t Know Anything“, and „Long Gone Day“. The lead single „River of Deceit“ had an accompanying music video, while other music videos were taken from performances from the band’s home video release, Live at The Moore. „River of Deceit“ was the most successful song from Above on the rock charts, reaching number two on the Mainstream Rock charts and number nine on the Modern Rock charts. „I Don’t Know Anything“ also charted on the Mainstream Rock charts. „River of Deceit“ is arguably the group’s best known song while „I Don’t Know Anything“ still maintains modest radio play today.

Rerelease

In October 2012, drummer Barrett Martin announced a Mad Season box set would be released on March 12, 2013, nearly 18 years to the day after the release of Above. The release date was later pushed back to April 2, 2013. Martin said that

To honor our departed brothers, Mike [McCready] and I oversaw a Mad Season box set, which comes out March 12th, 2013. It contains the re-mastered Above album, the Live at The Moore concert on DVD with surround sound, and a bunch of live recordings that we never released. The most exciting stuff: three songs that Mark Lanegan wrote lyrics and sang on, songs that we started to record for the second album but never finished because of Baker’s and Layne’s deaths. One of the songs Peter Buck wrote with us, and the other two are from me and Mike. They are three of the heaviest and most beautiful songs Mad Season did, and I know Layne and Baker will love them.[16]

On January 7, 2013, Blabbermouth.net reported that Legacy Recordings would release an expanded deluxe edition of Above, a three-disc boxset comprising two CDs and one DVD.[17] It includes the original studio album and a host of extras, specifically some unreleased tracks from the band’s unfinished second album with lyrics and vocals by Mark Lanegan; the full audio set of the band’s „Live at The Moore“ performance on April 29, 1995; and the first official DVD release of „Live at The Moore“, including a previously unreleased full concert video of the band’s New Year’s Eve performance from the now-defunct Seattle club RKCNDY.[17]

In April 2019, Above was ranked No. 18 on Rolling Stone’s „50 Greatest Grunge Albums“ list.[1]

Packaging

The album’s gloomy, black and white cover art featuring a couple tongue-kissing was illustrated by Staley.[18] The drawing was based upon a photograph of Staley and his ex-fiancée, Demri Lara Parrott.[19] The album’s title comes from the song „I’m Above“.

Track listing

All lyrics by Layne Staley, except where noted.[9] All music by Mad Season, except where noted.[9]

No.TitleMusicLength
1.„Wake Up“ 7:38
2.„X-Ray Mind“ 5:12
3.River of Deceit 5:04
4.„I’m Above“Barrett Martin, Mike McCready, Mark Lanegan, Staley5:44
5.„Artificial Red“ 6:16
6.„Lifeless Dead“ 4:29
7.I Don’t Know Anything 5:01
8.Long Gone DayMartin, McCready, Lanegan, Staley4:52
9.„November Hotel“ 7:08
10.„All Alone“ 4:12
2013 Deluxe Edition bonus tracks
No.TitleLyricsMusicLength
11.„Interlude“  0:43
12.„Locomotive“Lanegan 4:34
13.„Black Book of Fear“LaneganMartin, McCready, John Baker Saunders, Lanegan, Peter Buck6:08
14.„Slip Away“Lanegan 5:39
15.I Don’t Wanna Be a Soldier MamaJohn LennonLennon5:52
2013 Deluxe Edition Disc 2: Live at The Moore
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1.„Wake Up“ 7:38
2.„Lifeless Dead“ 4:59
3.„Artificial Red“ 6:21
4.„River of Deceit“ 5:10
5.„I Don’t Wanna Be a Soldier“Lennon9:20
6.„Long Gone Day“Lanegan, Martin, McCready, Staley5:21
7.„I’m Above“Lanegan, Martin, McCready, Staley5:36
8.„I Don’t Know Anything“ 6:23
9.„X-Ray Mind“ 5:32
10.„All Alone“ 4:17
11.„November Hotel“ 13:49

DVD: Live at The Moore plus bonus footage

Full video set of the Live at The Moore performance from Seattle, Washington, on April 29, 1995. It also contains bonus footage, including a full concert of the band’s performance at RKCNDY in Seattle on December 31, 1994, and both performances from Pearl Jam’s Self Pollution Radio broadcast on January 8, 1995.[17]

Outtakes

A promotional version of Above has a bonus track entitled „Interlude“, an instrumental piece by McCready which was also sometimes played live by Pearl Jam, labelled as „Going Home (improv)“, which follows „Artificial Red“. Mad Season’s cover of the John Lennon song „I Don’t Wanna Be a Soldier“ was also recorded around this time. „I Don’t Wanna Be a Soldier“ appeared on the 1995 John Lennon tribute album, Working Class Hero.

Personnel

Charts

Singles

YearSinglePeak chart positions
US Main
[26]
US Mod
[27]
CAN
[28]
CAN
Alt.

[29]
1995„River of Deceit“29688
„I Don’t Know Anything“20
„—“ denotes singles that did not chart.

Certifications

RegionCertificationCertified units/sales
United States (RIAA)[15]Gold500,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.

References

  1. ^ a b „50 Greatest Grunge Albums“. Rolling Stone. April 1, 2019.
  2. ^ Goodman, William (April 5, 2013). „Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready on „Powerful“ Mad Season Reissue: „I Started Crying“. Fuse. Archived from the original on May 17, 2013. Retrieved August 9, 2018.
  3. ^ Prato, Greg. „Mad Season Biography, Songs, & Albums“. AllMusic. Retrieved November 28, 2021.
  4. ^ a b c Gilbert, Jeff (April 1995). „ALIVE - Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready Says Goodbye To Drugs and Alcohol And Is a Better Man For It“. Guitar World.
  5. ^ a b Cross, Charles R. (June 1, 2002). „The Last Days of Layne Staley“. Rolling Stone. Retrieved August 21, 2007.
  6. ^ Gaar, Gillian G. „Radio Free Vedder“. Rolling Stone. February 23, 1995.
  7. ^ Altman, Billy (April 23, 2002). „Alice In Chains‘ Staley Remembered By Mad Season Mate & Rage’s Morello“. Archived from the original on August 12, 2011.
  8. ^ a b c Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. „Above - Mad Season | Songs, Reviews, Credits“. AllMusic. Retrieved March 21, 2009.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g Above (deluxe edition liner notes). Mad Season. Columbia Records. 2013. 88725473392.{{cite AV media notes}}: CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  10. ^ Melis, Matt (April 5, 2013). „Mad Season’s Lone Record Rises Above the Pain to Celebrate the Music: Classic Album Review“. Consequence. Retrieved April 5, 2013.
  11. ^ a b Eddy, Chuck (April 21, 1995). „Above“. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 28, 2008.
  12. ^ a b (July 1, 1995). „Review: Above“. Melody Maker (p. 38).
  13. ^ Deusner, Stephen M. (April 1, 2013). „Mad Season - Above (Deluxe Edition)“. Pitchfork. Retrieved April 1, 2013.
  14. ^ a b Davies, Barbara (February 2, 1998). „Mad Season: Above. Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on May 2, 2009. Retrieved May 20, 2009.
  15. ^ a b „American album certifications – Mad Season – Above“. Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  16. ^ Brownlee, Clint (October 4, 2012). „Seattle Rock Veterans Present their Walking Papers“. The SunBreak. Archived from the original on October 23, 2012. Retrieved October 7, 2012.
  17. ^ a b c „MAD SEASON: Deluxe Edition Of ‚Above‘ Due In April“. Blabbermouth.net. January 7, 2013. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  18. ^ Liner notes, Above 1995.
  19. ^ „Layne and Demri“. laynethelegend.com. Archived from the original on March 9, 2009.
  20. ^ „Top RPM Albums: Issue 9143“. RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  21. ^ „Norwegiancharts.com – Mad Season – Above“. Hung Medien. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  22. ^ „Swedishcharts.com – Mad Season – Above“. Hung Medien. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  23. ^ „Mad Season | Artist | Official Charts“. UK Albums Chart. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  24. ^ „Billboard 200 Chart - April 1, 1995“ (PDF). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved May 5, 2021.
  25. ^ „Top Billboard 200 Albums – Year-End 1995“. Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2021.
  26. ^ „Mad Season Chart History (Mainstream Rock)“. Billboard. Archived from the original on October 26, 2018. Retrieved May 5, 2021.
  27. ^ „Mad Season Chart History (Alternative Airplay)“. Billboard. Archived from the original on October 25, 2018. Retrieved May 5, 2021.
  28. ^ „Canadian Charts – „River of Deceit“. RPM. Archived from the original on December 3, 2008. Retrieved March 7, 2008.
  29. ^ Top RPM Rock/Alternative Tracks: Issue 9205. RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved October 25, 2018.

Artist(s)

Veröffentlichungen von Mad Season die im OTRS erhältlich sind/waren:

Above

Mad Season auf Wikipedia (oder andere Quellen):

Mad Season
Allgemeine Informationen
Genre(s)Grunge, Alternative Rock
Gründung1994
Gründungsmitglieder
Layne Staley († 2002)
Mike McCready
Barrett Martin
John „Baker“ Saunders († 1999)

Mad Season war ein Projekt der Musiker Mike McCready (Gitarre, Pearl Jam), Layne Staley (Gesang, Alice in Chains), Barrett Martin (Schlagzeug, Screaming Trees) und John „Baker“ Saunders (Bass, The Walkabouts).

Bandgeschichte

Mad Season entstanden am 16. Oktober 1994 aus einer Jam-Session im Seattler Crocodile-Café und nahmen nur ein Album, Above, auf. Auf diesem Album ist als Gast auch Mark Lanegan, damals Sänger der Screaming Trees und später auch Gastsänger der Queens of the Stone Age, zu hören. Er steuerte Gesangteile zu den Songs I’m Above und Long Gone Day bei. Ihr erster Bandname war The Gacy Bunch.

John „Baker“ Saunders starb im Jahr 1999 an einer Überdosis Heroin.

Layne Staley starb im Jahr 2002 an einer Überdosis Heroin und Kokain (bekannt als Speedball).

Diskografie

Chartplatzierungen
Erklärung der Daten
Alben[1][2]
Above
 UK4125.03.1995(3 Wo.)
 US24 
Gold
Gold
01.04.1995(29 Wo.)

Alben

Singles und EPs

  • 1995: River of Deceit (Columbia Records)
  • 1995: I Don’t Know Anything (Columbia Records)
  • 1995: Long Gone Day (feat. Mark Lanegan) (Columbia Records)

Videos

  • 1995: Live at the Moore (Columbia Records)

Kompilations-Beiträge

  • 1995: I Don’t Wanna Be a Soldier auf Working Class Hero: A Tribute to John Lennon (Hollywood Records)
  • 1996: River of Deceit (Live) auf Bite Back: Live at the Crocodile Café (PopLlama Records)

Weblinks

Quellen

  1. Chartquellen: UK US
  2. Auszeichnungen für Musikverkäufe: US

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Mad Season ¦ Above
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