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Old 01-31-2010, 04:40 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Smashing Pumpkins (Official Thread)


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Smashing Pumpkins


Smashing Pumpkins Website
Smashing Pumpkins Youtube Channel

Studio Albums

Gish (1991)
Siamese Dream (1993)
Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness (1995)
Adore (1998)
Machina/The Machines of God (2000)
Machina II/The Friends & Enemies of Modern Music (2000)
Zeitgeist (2007)
Teargarden by Kaleidyscope (2009–present)
Oceania (2012)

First off I have to say thank you to Oblivion for letting me have the privilege of doing this thread despite his contribution to the band himself. Until now, I had a hard time even wrapping my head around a thread for a group that has such an impact on me and my love for music. The Smashing Pumpkins are my Led Zeppelin! They are my Doors! They are my Beatles! They are the untouchable epic band that contains a legacy that intrigues me and a future that I anticipate with every turn. Every detail from the music itself to the lyrics to the artwork to the videos to the constantly changing elements of the sound and identity of what the band is itself has me sucked into a world bigger and more crucial than anything else I've ever crossed paths with musically. Everything I've listened to since has been influenced by the qualities I gathered when The Smashing Pumpkins introduced me to what I desire in music.

The music that came off of Siamese Dream was my gateway drug. Since that day I've found that music was more than just something to rock out to. Music became the most beautiful, cathartic, mysterious, out of body experience that I could have in life. Ever since then I've been addicted to finding the next high! The next piece of music to give me chills, have the hair stand up on my arms, make a tear form in the corner of my eye or smile in a euphoric daze, make you close your eyes and soak it in note for note, replay a song 10,000 times over to just hear the perfect melody, etc. Have I found elements of this since? Yes, but it will never be the same as the first experience I had with Siamese Dream and that craving for more wouldn't have started without it.

Since then I've bought everything I could get my hands on Smashing Pumpkin related. I love through this journey with the band that I got a different result with everything they released. The spacey dreamy rock of Siamese Dream, the psychedelia of Gish, the epic hard rock of Melloncollie and the Infinite Sadness, the electronic masterpiece of Adore, the fusion of the two before mentioned with Machina and the pastiche of everything with The Aeroplane Flies High box set and Pisces Iscariot. In fact, the Smashing Pumpkins b-sides were better crafted and thought out than most bands studio albums.

When the Smashing Pumpkins originally disbanded in 2000 it felt like a kick in the gut. It just didn't feel like anyway could be an epic enough way to end such a legacy. Regardless, it wasn't a total loss because like I said about even a Smashing Pumpkin B-side being better than most anything, I feel the exact same about any fragment of the Smashing Pumpkin group. After the breakup, I got to experience the sunny James Iha solo, Billy Corgans chance at pop with Zwan, Jimmy Chamberlins drumming exhibition on The Jimmy Chamberlin Project and Billy's electronic solo.

Now that we have a second incarnation of the Smashing Pumpkins I'm excited like a little kid again. It may not be an exact replica of the original Smashing Pumpkins but the original Smashing Pumpkins was never made out of stability. It thrived on chaos and the urge to reinvent and redefine itself. I really believe that Billy Corgan is at a creative peak right now and is loving the artistic journey of making music for musics sake right now. That's why I feel like a thread is perfect right now because it's an exciting time to be a fan as well as relish in the history of what's brought the Smashing Pumpkins entity to this point!

I plan on doing the most detailed, epic thread I can for these guys. I'll try to do a non-copy paste writing and musings on everything from their history, to band members, to album and song reviews, to lyric and art displays as well as a huge collage of photo imagery of everything Smashing Pumpkins! I only hope I can do them the justice they deserve!
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:28 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

If I didn't know better I would get the impression you are a Smashing Pumpkins Fanboy of the highest order Soot...

I have started to appreciate them more due to your tireless promotion of all things Pumpkin, so I'll stop by to check out what you are doing in here.

Off the wall question, why in gawd's name did Corgan shave his head, he looks much better in the first band picture?...
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Old 02-01-2010, 02:08 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

Originally Posted by Lord Grendel View Post
If I didn't know better I would get the impression you are a Smashing Pumpkins Fanboy of the highest order Soot...

I have started to appreciate them more due to your tireless promotion of all things Pumpkin, so I'll stop by to check out what you are doing in here.

Off the wall question, why in gawd's name did Corgan shave his head, he looks much better in the first band picture?...
Thanks LG!

Actually before I give you the "real" theories, I always looked at it as part of the image and metamorphosis that the Pumpkins went through and honestly I like it. In the earliest days with the Gish album Billy had that long hair and I don't think it works for him at all. He looked like someone who was trying way to hard to look like a hippy.


The rest of the group actually looks natural but then you have Billy with that long hair that completely contrasts his facial profile and features. It almost looks like it has to be a wig and you have evidence visually that it's not but my head just doesn't see it as right.

I personally think Billy had the best hair in the Siamese Dream era with the short hair but it really made him look really young. During that time it was appropriate because with Siamese Dream is was really youth oriented in my opinion. Just the cover alone with the two twin girls previews that. A lot of lyrics dealt with his childhood and even though Billy would revisit these themes later is was far more cryptic and mature than on Siamese Dream. Billy's vocals were very wispy and child like at this time as well as was the music that surrounded it. It was a lighter dreamy album and after this the Pumpkins would have a harder more epic and fantastical approach to their music.



As the Pumpkins went on Billy became more eccentric and the imagery became more in the realm of epic fantasy and I think the bald head really fit the eccentricities. Billy is very self indulgent and obsessed with the band as an entity and something larger than life. The youthful look wouldn't cut it at that point. I think the bald head makes Billy look like some sort of sage which is probably how he feels. A lot of the imagery between Melloncollie up to Machina was very gothic as well and the bald head also gives billy that snarling gargoyle like look.



I don't see anything but the bald look working for Billy ever again!

As for the theories, most people attribute it to actual balding and a receding hairline that you can see in the last video Corgan did with hair, Bullet With Butterfly Wings! In that case, I really don't blame the guy!
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Old 02-01-2010, 03:04 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

Hey this is a great start to what's going to be an awesome thread! I'll be checking back in everyday for sure!!!
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Old 02-01-2010, 03:24 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

So now that I've covered hair it's time to go back to the beginning! Way to the beginning!



O.K., a little further ahead!

The Marked


Before the Pumpkins, actually about 5 years before starting in 1983, Billy Corgan was in a band called The Marked who were originally called Coat of Eyes in their earliest stage! Like The Smashing Pumpkins, The Marked started as a Chicago band playing with a new wave goth sound. They soon would play primarily in the St. Petersburg Florida area.

The band started as a collaboration between Billy Corgan and Greg Bates, both who did vocals and guitar, and in two years time became a complete band adding bassist, Dale Meiners and a drummer Ron Roesing. Like the Pumpkins, The Marked lacked stability and only made it through 20 shows as a full band before losing a member (Meiners) and fragmenting the band. The returning of Corgan and Bates to Chicago would make history though as this is where Billy would meet James Iha and The first incarnation of the Smashing Pumpkins (1987) would be a trio of Corgan, Iha and Bates!



Only one piece of evidence was recorded for this called ironically, Nothing Ever Changes! Later, down the road when the Smashing Pumpkins lineup that everyone knows formed Corgan would be sued by ex Marked bandmates for using footage of the band in their Vieuphoria concert/group video.

Thanks to the internet today where anything can be found I can actually display vids that even I never got to hear before (outside of Vieuphoria) due to the rarity of it. This just goes to show how much of The Smashing Pumpkins Billy made up because just from having him in it you can see how this could have lead to The Smashing Pumpkins sound! The recordings are obviously very rough and low key but I think they are cool nuggets of sound and the potential is obviously there!

The Marked-Ring of the Shadow
(You can definitely hear the new wave on this one, seems like Billy did this on his own though)


The Marked-Heart of a Mind
(I like this one and it shows a picture of original member Bates as well!)


The Marked-Murder Mix
(sounds like another Corgan solo)


The Marked-Mao Say Tongue
(This ones different but I like it, Corgan really sings out more on this than the others)


The Marked-Now That I Feel


The Marked-Scary Neurotic Song


The Marked-The Trance
(really cool middle eastern vibe)


The Marked-The Trance (Alternate Version)
(better video showing actual performance footage)
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Old 02-02-2010, 03:48 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

The Creation of The Pumpkin Patch

Billy Corgan and James Iha


So after the rare '87 demo was made between Billy Corgan,
James Iha (who had met Corgan at a record shop where Corgan worked)
and the man who would be the Pete Best of The Smashing Pumpkins

Ron Roesing,


the forming of the Pumpkins we would all know was about to happen.

First let's here one of the songs from that '87 demo Nothing Ever Changes:

Suites Me Well/The Vigil


Heart/Cross
MP edit: Video removed from youtube

Roesing left the band leaving Corgan and Iha to perform shows with a drum machine. It was in '87 that a fated meeting would happen. Ironically, Billy would acquire bassist

D'arcy Wretzky


in a typical dysfunctional Pumpkin way. The two had their first conversation arguing about a band that they saw and when Billy found out D'arcy was a bassist he invited her to play with them. Two shows later, one with D'arcy joing them for the first time the club owner pushed the band to find an actual drummer to replace their dependence on the drum machine they used for shows.
Drummer Jimmy Chamberlin was a musician far from the Pumpkin mold as he played in jazz bands and alternative rock wasn't even in his repertoire. Regardless though, a friend of that knew Billy recommended him to the band and after an awkward transition Chamberlins background actually added to the bands strengths.

We were completely into the sad-rock, Cure kind of thing. It took about two or three practices before I realized that the power in his playing was something that enabled us to rock harder than we could ever have imagined.~Billy Corgan (concerning Jimmy Chamberlin)



In 1989, the Pumpkins would appear on a compilation and a year later 1n 1990 release a single,

I Am One

(1990 performance)


which would end up as a cornerstone of their first official album!

These b-sides were also on the single:

Terrapin (Syd Barrett cover)
(James Iha did vocals)


Terrapin (Rare '91 Live Version)


Bullet Train to Osaka
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:14 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

The Smashing Pumpkins '88 Demos and Rarities

Here are the videos of the material before the first release of the I Am One Single!

These are songs first created in a session with Corgan, Iha and a drum machine!

Break/My Dahlia


There It Goes
(cool guitar solo towards at the end)


Under Your Spell
(a heavier chugging guitar than their other earlier stuff)


The drum machine is very obvious in the following two:

Armed To The Teeth


Screaming
(love the actual scream at 3:05)


Sun/Death of a Mind
(may be my favorite of the bunch)


Holiday
(cool heavy drum machine sound, poppy enough to be in a John Hughes flick IMO)


I Fall
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:43 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

Two of the songs, Sun and My Dahlia would be recorded onto a compilation,

Light Into Dark


with producer Mark Ignofo! Added to this would be the song

East


The first demo tape of the Billy Corgan/James Iha/drum machine version of The Smashing Pumpkins and also titled The Smashing Pumpkins included East and these three songs also recorded with Mark Ignofo:

The Smashing Pumpkins Demo:

Jennifer Ever


Nothing and Everything
(cool metalish guitars, especially cool at 4:24)


Spiteface
(I like the sludgy guitars here)


two recordings made during this demo session of Sun (remixed) and a live version of a song She have been lost.
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Old 02-02-2010, 06:05 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: "The Official" (The) Smashing Pumpkins Thread

The Creation of a "Smashing" Name


Let's take a break from the music for a bit! The story of how The Smashing Pumpkins got their name is varied! Here are some bulletpoints of the theories of it's origin!

-On the Vieuphoria VHS/DVD D' Arcy is quoted as saying:

The name of the band is a stupid name, a dumb bad joke and a bad idea,
OK?" she says. "Billy named the band before there even was a band. He was
like, 'I'm gonna have a band and it's gonna be called this.' 'Smashing'
is not a verb, it's an adjective. It's not like we like to smash pumpkins
or anything. And we are not amused by pumpkin jokes anymore.


-On the other hand Wikipedia states that D' Arcy and James Iha both declared that a friend by the name of Bob English had came up with the name for them. So it may not have been Billy Corgan which means that the origin may be a blur to all of them.

-In a theory that ties in with the above Billy did hear it from a friend, likely Bob English, and though he liked it and used it obviously he wanted it to stand for the British act of being "Smashing" rather than the literal use of smashing a pumpkin.

-This quote is one that MetalPriest would get a kick out of :

Gene Simmons came to us in a dream and said: 'Joe Strummer is a pumpkin,
drunken and smashed.~The Band in a statement for a '93 fan newsletter


So those are the ones that have been repeated but there are tons of theories where fans were truly pulling ideas out of theoir anal cavity. Nonetheless, it's a name that stuck and worked throughout the career. Like the name or nor, the band was great enough to be takenn seriously despite the potentially goofy nature of it's name!
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Old 02-02-2010, 06:57 AM   #10 (permalink)
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It's like Billy was doing the John Lennon Flaming Pie line as a take off!

A Man came to me on a flaming pie and said you are Beatles with an "A"

Clever stuff!!
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