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Picks and Pans Review: Badmotorfinger

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Soundgarden

Let’s say you’re stuck in traffic after an exceptionally bad day at the office. It’s sleeting, and your significant other has invited people you can’t stand over for dinner. If you don’t let off steam real soon, your head is gonna pop. Luckily you’ve got Badmotorfinger ready to rip in the car stereo.

Soundgarden’s songs are as satisfying to listen to as a punching bag is to pummel. The band is one of numerous new groups emerging from the Pacific Northwest these days (Pearl Jam, Screaming Trees, to name just two) that play a new style of metal that thunders like Led Zeppelin and races with the fury of punk.

It isn’t for everyone. You don’t get the catchy melodies of a more mainstream metal band like Guns N’ Roses, so there will be no hit single. Chris Cornell’s lead scream, while perfectly suited to this musical style, would probably give Casey Kasem a heart attack. Still, a song like “Jesus Christ Pose” has enough raw energy to command your attention. And keep you from ramming your car into the guy in front of you. (A&M)