Smashing Pumpkins: Siamese Dream (Deluxe Edition)

smashing pumpkins, siamese dreamsSmashing Pumpkins: Siamese Dream (Deluxe Edition)
Although their debut, Gish, produced a top 200 single with “Rhinoceros,” the band was quickly overshadowed by Nirvana and the Seattle grunge scene. The Smashing Pumpkins has two choices: step up to the challenge of being the next band to break or to fade into obscurity. The band released Siamese Dream, an album that produced three top ten modern rock charting songs and was certified four times platinum. Eighteen years after its initial release, Siamese Dream gets its own expanded edition.
There is not a lot of reason to get into the merits of the original Siamese Dream. For anyone in their late-20s to mid-30s, Siamese Dream‘s track listing reads like a soundtrack to the summer of 1993: “Cherub Rock,” “Today,” “Rocket,” “Disarm,” “Soma,” “Geek U.S.A.,” and “Mayonaise” all made alternative radio impact not to mention that tracks like “Silverfuck” became fan favorites. What needs to be reviewed in this deluxe edition is the extras.
Let’s start with the exquisite packaging. The re-imagined cover art mixes the original photo of the girls with a background of psychedelic flowers, a poignant choice considering what always made the Smashing Pumpkins interesting was their mixture of hard rock with psychedelic elements. The CD booklet contains track-by-track rundown from Billy Corgan as well as reminiscing from revered rock critic, David Wild. The box contains 13 postcards with the original artwork, pictures of Corgan’s family with the lyrics written over them. Then there are the two CDs and DVD.
The first CD is the remastered original. The second CD contains 17 unreleased tracks. Of the 17 unreleased tracks, a large portion of them are demos. The demos of Siamese Dream‘s tracks showcase the songs’ evolution. What should be the interesting part of the CD are the non-album tracks. But co-existing instrumental tracks “U.S.A.” and “U.S.S.R.”, do not add a lot of depth to the understanding of the album.
What does add understanding is the DVD of the Smashing Pumpkins live at the Metro in Chicago in 1993. The band blazes through a set of 18 including all of Siamese Dream with the exception of “Sweet Sweet” and “Luna” and the first four songs from Gish. Considering that Corgan calls Siamese Dream “all of our dreams coming true, while the dreams of a happy band fell apart,” the band appears tight and poised to be the biggest rock band of their age. The deluxe edition is worth owning if for nothing else the gorgeous packaging and DVD.
Rating: 8.6/10
MP3: Smashing Pumpkins “Today (Broadway Rehearsals Demo)”
Buy: iTunes or Insound!