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Pearl Jam — 2013 New Album Preview ‘Lightning Bolt’

Pearl Jam
Danny Clinch, Pearl Jam

Pearl Jam have just announced that their new album ‘Lightning Bolt’ will be released in October 2013. Hear the single and get all the details here.

We’ve been waiting on PJ’s tenth album since late 2011, when several comments from their camp led us to believe it would be finished by early 2012. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending how you look at it), the band never regrouped to complete work on the long-awaited record.

Historically speaking, this is a good thing. The last (and only) time Pearl Jam had this large of a gap in their discography was between 2002′s ‘Riot Act’ and 2006′s self titled album (also known as ‘The Avocado Album’). Many fans and critics of the Seattle rockers consider ‘Pearl Jam’ to be their strongest album in the last decade, so all of our patience may pay off in the form of another incredible record.

The band has played several shows since work on the new album began, but they’ve yet to identify say whether any new tracks they’ve played will appear on the tenth LP. One thing is for certain though — they are not looking to make another ‘Backspacer.’ Guitarist Stone Gossard made that statement in a 2012 interview and lead guitarist Mike McCready solidified the statement by hinting that some tracks that didn’t fit in on that album may appear on the new disc.

The most recent updates on the follow-up to 2009′s ‘Backspacer’ came from Jeff Ament who said they’re about “halfway done” and Matt Cameron — currently playing drums for Soundgarden — has indicated that they are looking to wrap things up in the Spring.

As we mentioned in last year’s album preview, we’re really hoping the band capitalizes on the title of their tenth LP, as the number has always carried a large amount of symbolism for the band and their history. A couple of our suggestions (the best ones anyway) were to name the album ‘X’ or ‘Mookie Blaylock.’

Below are some live performances of songs that may or may not appear on the new PJ disc. Eddie Vedder has been busting out some new tunes on his current solo tour, but you just never know with Pearl Jam. We’re still waiting for ‘Last Soldier’ — a harmonica lead, McCready penned track the band debuted at the 2001 Bridge School Benefit — to show up on an album. If we learned anything from the release of 2003′s ‘Lost Dogs,’ it’s that some of the good stuff doesn’t always make the album.

Update (1/3/13): Eddie Vedder told Rolling Stone the following of the album’s sound after confirming that it is about halfway done:

“We really work together as a unit these days. It’s really the compilation of all the parts. It’s not like one guy trying to tell everybody, “These are my songs. This is what it should sound like.” We’ve figured out after all these years that if everybody just puts their stamp on it, then it sounds how we want it to. Then it sounds new, ’cause everyone is growing, you know. Everyone is growing after all these years.”

Update (5/8/13): Mike McCready revealed that he has been asked to remain quiet about the release date of the album, but said that they are currently in the mixing phase, which would indicate that they are finished recording and we will likely hear it soonish. He also said that it is, “way better” than ‘Backspacer.’

Update (5/31/13): According to a number of reports, AllAccess.com listed a new Pearl Jam’s single, titled ‘Mind Your Manners,’ as impacting radio on July 16th. Shortly after the info began making its way around the internet, the listing was removed. That means its probably going to happen and some intern posted it on the site too early… Come on, mid-July!

Update (7/1/13): AlternativeNation.net posted a story with unconfirmed info on the album including the title ‘Tides,’ a tracklist which includes ‘Mind Your Manners’ and ‘Of the Earth” amongst a series of unknown titles and a release date of October 8th. Keep in mind that most of that has yet to be confirmed.

Update (7/8/13): Pearl Jam announced their 2013 North American tour dates (Click here to see them).

Update (7/11/13): Pearl Jam have revealed that the new album is titled ‘Lightning Bolt’ and will be released in the US on October 15th. They also released the lead single ‘Mind Your Manners,’ click the play button below to hear.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Untitled — Performed by Eddie Vedder (9/04/11 East Troy, WI)

Untitled Jam — Performed by Pearl Jam (7/05/12 Berlin, Germany)

‘Of the Earth’ — Performed by Pearl Jam (from ‘The Kids Are Twenty’)

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