Chris Cornell goes electronic on new CD
Melody Baetens / The Detroit News
Chris Cornell is a true American rock star. He's had major success as lead singer of grunge-era bands Soundgarden and Temple of the Dog, of modern-rock group Audioslave, and also as a solo artist.
As with many career musicians, Cornell's music is bound to evolve. His latest solo album, "Scream," has certainly taken a sharp turn, one that might worry some hard-rock fans.
Cornell teamed up with hip-hop producer Timbaland, creating a less organic and less rock and roll sound than his previous efforts. Instead, "Scream," his third solo album, leans toward electronic dance music. He even brought in former boy-band member Justin Timberlake to co-write and sing back-up on the track "Take Me Alive."
"I just thought that would be an interesting thing to do, different than anything else I've ever done," Cornell says. The singer says he likes the "trippiness" of hip-hop music, which makes sense to him because as a kid he listened to a lot of '70s stoner-rock music.
So far, the album has gotten lukewarm reviews from SPIN, Rolling Stone and Billboard, but "Scream" still debuted at No. 10, on the U.S. charts, making it Cornell's first Top 10 solo album. The following week, however, it dropped to No. 65, which is the first time in more than two years that a Top 10 album has dropped that far in its second week.
Whether you are into Cornell's new sound or not, his live show still will be mostly rock-based -- newer songs will be played with the traditional guitar-bass-drums band setup.
"We approached it by playing the (new) songs as a rock band ... even though we'll have a keyboard player," Cornell says. "They basically transform into rock songs but rhythmically, and to some degree sonically, they're still different and stay true to the record."
Cornell also says his set will change each night of the tour, and will include music from throughout his career
I have to say the first time i heard this CD it was a little ruff around the edges to me. Being a huge Cornell fan from Temple of the dog, Sound Garden, Audio slave to electric music was a little odd for me to hear. Keep in mind I love Timberland too I think he is a great producer the beats on this Cd are straight out of Timberlake or One Republic but for him to think Cornell for this had to be of a reach i would think. But as usual he was 100% right the CD is awesome and i would put it in the Category for best Album of the year...im not saying it would win but it is that good. So different than what you would expect from Cornell glad he explored out of his genre a little the dude can sing...