In 1984, four unknown members of the underground Seattle music scene created, Soundgarden. Vocalist/guitarist Chris Cornell, drummer Matt Cameron, bassist Ben Shepard, and guitarist Kim Thayil formed the final lineup. In 1990, original Bassist Hiro Yamamoto departed the band due to his lack of musical recognition. Arguably the best grunge band to come from Seattle, the group began playing in local clubs as a punk act. The group changed its sound and members on a few occasions; yet, was able to find its own way to a local record label.
Soundgarden worked on a few EPs including “Hunted Down” and “Nothing to Say” before their 1990 reissue titled Screaming Life/Fopp. They released their music under the new label Sub-Pop. Soon, major record labels became interested in the group; however, the band inked a deal with a smaller known SST Records. After signing with their new label, Soundgarden released their full-length debut album, Ultramega Ok.
The record received modest reviews, a Grammy nomination, and led to a major US and European tour. Fans of Soundgarden loved their edgy sound; yet, became unhappy when the band signed with A&M Records. Band supporters felt the anti-establishment tone set by Soundgarden would disappear. The changing of labels led to a rift with their audience that subsided over time.
In 1991, the quartet brought in bassist Jason Everman and dropped their first album with A&M Records. Again, the record received mixed reviews; yet, with the help of the developing grunge scene it gained success. Overtime, singles “Outshined” and “Rusty Cage” became popular, furthering their album sales. Soundgarden followed Badmotorfinger with a world tour and returned to the studio in 1993.
On March 8, 1994, the Seattle natives dropped their fourth album, Superunknown. Soon, the record gained critical and commercial acclaim. Creative and edgy, their hit songs “Spoonman,” “Black Hole Sun,” and “Fell on Black Days” flooded radio stations. The album received several MTV awards and also gained a Grammy nomination. After a world tour, in 1996 Soundgarden returned to the studio to release their next album, Down on the Upside.
Although the album did not sale as well as their previous, singles “Burden In My Hand,” “Pretty Noose,” and others gained acceptance overtime. Soon after, the group disbanded after intense touring and turned to solo projects.
Since, Soundgarden has released singles and performed at random shows and tours. Several announcements made about upcoming albums have yet to happen. In 2014, the group tried to setup a summer tour but canceled it. Soundgarden fans are currently anticipating an upcoming tour announcement.
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