Music

When I first saw the Smashing Pumpkins at the Roseland in the fall of 1991, they were second on the bill—before the Red Hot Chili Peppers but after this obscure Northwestern band called Pearl Jam. They were doing their version of the loud/quiet rock thing—as powerful as Nirvana but with a more sinuous, feline grace. Billy goaded the largely frat-boy audience by telling them that the crowd in Philly rocked way harder than they did.


Pearl and the Beard is modern folk at its most graceful.


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