The Smashing Pumpkins
Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness


3.5
great

Review

by JmE USER (1 Reviews)
January 14th, 2005 | 64 replies | 11,981 views


Release Date: 1995 | Tracklist


0 of 3 thought this review was well written

This will be one lengthy review: It is 2 CDs, and has total of 28 tracks. I had to split it up into two posts. I'm going to be doing a song by song review also. I'll try to make them short, cut, clear and to the point. This review is done purely out of my own knowledge... band history and all.
First, an introduction to the Smashing Pumpkins...


The Smashing Pumpkins cannot be defined by a single genre of music. As with most successful bands, they fused a number of genres together to make an original, appealing sound. They drew inspiration from bands like Led Zeppelin, The Cure, Joy Division and The Beatles. The thing that will make or break this band with your own personal tastes is Billy Corgan's voice. He has the ability to produce a high-pitched, nasal voice and uses it often in songs like Tonight, Tonight and Bullet With Butterfly Wings. Some people like it, some people hate it. Some people, it doesn't bother and they purely enjoy the music.

The Smashing Pumpkins were on of the most notable rock groups of the 1990's. They started out in the late 80's in the local scene of Chicago, Illinois. They were on their way to the top once they gained interest from the owner of a club called The Metro in Chicago. In time, they became a part of the Virgin records family and released Gish in 1991, which established their place in the indie rock underground. They broke out into the mainstream with their 1993 release, Siamese Dream. Two years later, they would drop their defining record and become the rock gods of 1996. Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness has sold nearly 10 million records, and defined the career of The Smashing Pumpkins.

During Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, while on tour, Jimmy Chamberlain and Jonathon Melvoin overdosed on heroin. Jimmy survived... Jonathon did not. Jonathon Melvoin was their touring keyboardist. The Pumpkins regrouped and continued touring... but Jimmy was kicked out, and he went through rehab. This was major... the Pumpkins went on to write an album without him, Adore, and then got him back for one more album, Machina, and then played their final show on December 2, 2000.

General thoughts regarding MCIS
One of my favorite albums of all-time, without a question. It is purely epic. The range of music genres displayed through all songs is what makes this album. From orchestrated, up-lifting songs like Tonight Tonight, to hard, raunchy rock like Bullet With Butterfly Wings, to soft lullabys like Beautiful, there has to be one song on here that would appeal to one's ears.

Dawn to Dusk

Track 1: Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness
To begin the journey of MCIS, is a piano piece to set up the following song perfectly. No lyrics, no guitar, no drums... just a piano and some other effects. It's quite good, but hard to rate. It's high score mainly comes from being a great opening piece for the song to follow, and the entire album. [4/5]

Track 2: Tonight, Tonight
The band plays with a full 30 piece orchestra here. Billy Corgan's "whiney" voice is in full effect here during the chorus. The lyrics are genious. It is very motivating, epic and up-lifting because of the lyrics. The backing orchestra adds so much to this song, it makes this song what it is... one of the best Pumpkins songs out there. Beautiful string arrangement on this one. It was the 4th single released off the album. [5/5]

Track 3: Jellybelly
Now they enter straight into rock after great introductions by tracks 1 and 2 of this album. I don't know how to describe it other than: great, rocking tune. [4/5]

Track 4: Zero
Classic rock riff that has produced many cover attempts by bands like Evanescence and Bad Religion. James Iha described this song, as something that would be written by Judas Priest. This was the 3rd single release off the album, although it was only initially supposed to be a radio single. [4/5]

Track 5: Here is No Why
The highlight of this song has to be the solo. It's fantastic. Not anything technically astounding, but it is very well written. It's a rock tune about being a rockstar, basically. [5/5]

Track 6: Bullet With Butterfly Wings
The first single released off the album, and it pretty much lead the way for putting SP in the spotlight. "Despite all my rage I am still just a rat in a cage!" The defining lyric of this song. It's hard, it's fast and it's memorable. It's often mislabelled as "Rat in a cage" on P2P programs. [4/5]

Track 7: To Forgive
Enough with all rock songs already... time to slow things down a bit. Nice acoustic piece, it's a rather depressing song. It's the other side of The Smashing Pumpkins with quiet guitar, and emotion derived from sadness. [5/5]

Track 8: Fuck You (An Ode to Noone)
The title of the track explains it all. It's a thrash song which Billy described as his big "Fuck you" to the world. I'm not much of a fan of this song. It's fairly intense. [3/5]

Track 9: Love
Another track that I don't like too much. Something you listen to... once in a great while. It's laid back, and uses alot of effects on it. It's about love, not quite some sappy love song though. [3/5]

Track 10: Cupid de Locke
Like the previous one, except this one is definitely a sappy love poem. Not too fond of it myself. These three tracks here are sort of a down time on the CD. I guess that's what you get for 28 songs, although some of the B-Side are quite good, and could have replaced songs like these. [2.5/5]

Track 11: Galapagos
Great song. It's a clean guitar song and one of the best songs on this album. Really good lyrics, and a great atmosphere to it. [5/5]

Track 12: Muzzle
Now we pick back up again to a rock song, this one is more pop-rock though. Released as a radio single, and despite it's catchy tone, reading into the lyrics you find it's rather a depressing song. I guess you could describe it as accepting loss in a good way. Contains my favorite lyrics of all time.[5/5]

Track 13: Porcelina of the Vast Oceans
Starts out really slow, ends really slow, but in between it all is just some great, loud music. Long song, 8 minutes or so. Don't know the exactness of it all. It's the "epic" song of disc 1. SP always tends to put one long, epic song on each of their releases, this is it. The lyrics are very poetic. [4/5]

Track 14: Take Me Down
This one has James Iha singing. If you want to find out what his solo work is like, here it is. I think it's quite good, but anyway. Good way to close out Dawn to Dusk, soft acoustic piece that is quite catchy. [3.5/5]

Twilight to Starlight



Track 1: Where Boys Fear to Tread

I don't really connect with this song all that well. It has a great riff in it, but the lyrics don't make much sense to me. Billy has a diluted mind anyway and likes it that way. He's readily said before that he tends to write completely random lyrics. [3/5]



Track 2: Bodies

"Love is suicide!" Sort of like the defining line of Bullet With Butterfly Wings. It's an easy song, easy riff work that's pretty much just an "angry" song with Billy screaming. He actually screams alright for once, and doesn't use his high pitched screech. I like this song alot. [4/5]



Track 3: Thirty-Three

Released as the fifth and last single. Some people like it alot, some don't. I like it a lot. The lyrics are really great. It was the first song written for the album. Basically, as Billy was coming down from the high of the popularity of Siamese Dream, he wrote it with a great outlook on life. During Vh1 Storytellers, he said the title "33" came from when he saw a fortune teller and was told his life would change at age 33 (Something along those lines). Oddly enough, the Smashing Pumpkins came to an end while he was at the age of 33. [4.5/5]



Track 4: In the Arms of Sleep

Wonderful acoustic track. It's a song about loneliness and desire for love. My only problem with it is this one part in the middle where Billy starts screeching the lyrics, otherwise, it's a fantastic acoustic song that really soothes the ears. [4/5]



Track 5: 1979

Released as the second single, and during the summer of 96, I think, it was one of the summer classics. A song about reckless youth in it's prime. Something everyone can connect to. Great song all around... great riff, and then, in the middle it's amazing. The bridge part of the song, I guess you call it. I've heard some live versions and when they do it perfectly it's a great experience. Great song! [5/5]



Track 6: Tales of a Scorched Earth

Another one of those angry songs. I think it could have been better. It's for one of those moods where you hate everything. Different from An Ode to Noone though. Singing is a bit twisted from the effects. It was only performed once live, but never again because of the strain it put on Billy's throat. [1/5]



Track 7: Thru the Eyes of Ruby

The epic, long song of disc 2. The best song on the album, and possibly the best SP song ever. It has some really great parts, like the bridge in 1979. Where the guitar kicks in and the lyrics are "With this ring I wed thee...", then there is the part where Billy screams "The night has come to hold us young" and then they very last segment of the song, an absolutely beautiful acoustic piece. As the main song full of distortion fades, acoustic guitars come in. It is really amazing. Not too long, like 20 seconds or so, and the worst thing is they let it fade unfinished so you want more! The complete version of the last segment is called Mellon Collie Reprise, or so I hear. It's really rare, I haven't found it yet, but then again I haven't looked to hard. Beautiful while it lasts... [5/5]



Track 8: Stumbleine

Just Billy and a guitar. Great song. Softly sung, and a catchy little acoustic riff. Wonderful lyrics... "Nobody nowhere understands anything, about me, and all my dreams... lost at sea." Great way to follow Thru the Eyes of Ruby [5/5]



Track 9: X.Y.U

Angry love song. I'm not a fan of it by any means. It's a real thrash song in the middle... where they really speed things up leading into the end. Not my song really... so... [2/5]



Track 10: We Only Come Out at Night

Full of effects and electronic music type stuff. Really good lyrics too. Easy vibe. Don't know what else to say. Fairly decent song. [4/5]



Track 11: Beautiful

A corny love song. It's really catchy though, especially the guitar in the middle. D'arcy and Billy sing it together, like a duet or something. I actually like this song despite it's corny lyrics, and love vibe. Certainly not for everyone though. [4/5]



Track 12: Lily (My One and Only)

As far as I know, Lily is Billy's cat. It's just a simple song, which Billy dedicates to his cat and all those times they aren't together when Billy is on the road... [3/5]



Track 13: By Starlight

As you can see, Twilight to Starlight is really toned down and has a different vibe from the first. This is a very mellow and beautiful love song. [4/5]



Track 14: Farewell and Goodnight

Perfect ending to this saga. Acoustic guitar, piano, hand drum and I think a guitar with a wah effect. All four members sing here, which makes the song. The first part is Billy and James. Then the second part is D'arcy and Jimmy, and then Billy comes back in. They all sing together, a good night song. Then the rest of the instruments fade out and leave the piano... it's a beautiful piano piece. Perfect ending. The piano continues and fades off... ending a great album. [5/5]



Overall rating: 5/5



I actually did it... whew.



Other tidbits:

The album was originally slated to be 31 songs (Set the Ray to Jerry, Tonite Reprise and Ugly) but it was later cut down to 28.

The Aeroplane Flies High was a box set released to account for the five singles releases of this albums. It contains all the b-sides like the three cut before.

The last songs on both Dawn to Dusk and Twilight to Starlight are the same length.

Almost all songs were written by Billy Corgan... except for Take Me Down, and Farewell and Goodnight, which were partly written by James Iha.


user ratings (2268)
Chart.
4.2
excellent
other reviews of this album
Porter W. Richards (5)
A long and spiraling experimental classic that works together as a whole amazingly well and is engag...

Adam Downer STAFF (4)
The Smashing Pumpkins third album is by far their most ambitious effort, with some truly brilliant s...

montague (4.5)
...

mikefromPTF (5)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
ZEROthirtythree
November 28th 2003



234 Comments


Originally posted by JmE
Track 6: Tales of a Scorched Earth
Another one of those angry songs. I think it could have been better. It's for one of those moods where you hate everything. Different from An Ode to Noone though. Singing is a bit twisted from the effects. Lyrics are great to connect with if you are really depressed. [3/5]

Track 9: X.Y.U
Angry love song. I'm not a fan of it by any means. It's a real thrash song in the middle... where they really speed things up leading into the end. Not my song really... so... [3/5]

Track 10: We Only Come Out at Night
Full of effects and electronic music type stuff. Really good lyrics too. Easy vibe. Don't know what else to say. Fairly decent song. [4/5]

Track 11: Beautiful
A corny love song. It's really catchy though, especially the guitar in the middle. D'arcy and Billy sing it together, like a duet or something. I actually like this song despite it's corny lyrics, and love vibe. Certainly not for everyone though. [3.5/5]

Track 13: By Starlight
As you can see, disc 2 is really toned down. This is another little love song, it's really good though. Not for everyone. Low key, simple. [3.5/5]


these are the ones i disagree with...

Tales of a Scorched earth = 1.0 Its an aweful, just plain aweful song.

XYU = 1.5 Also a bad song. Bad lyrics, but a decent solo at the end

We only come out at night = .5 Boring song

Beautiful = 5.0 Tremendous song. Fantastic lyrics, the title describes the song. its a beautiful track.

By Starlight = 5.0 :eek: is that JmE talking? how can you not like by starlight?

JmE
November 28th 2003



3 Comments


I was trying to be a bit modest here. I think Beautiful is a 5, and By Starlight a 4, maybe 4.5 but I always though that I was the only loser on this planet that listened to Beautiful, and By Starlight, although I like it alot, I don't listen to it much.
We Only Come Out at Night is a good song! :p
I can dig XYU once in awhile, so I gave it a 3.
And well, Tales of a Scorched Earth, I think it had alot of potential. It has that one part... yea.

IcemanCDF
November 28th 2003



1 Comments


My only true disagreement with this...

F[i][/i]uck You (an Ode to No One) should be a 5/5. See, I'm one of those people who really enjoys the headbanger tunes that the pumpkins did (other songs including Geek USA and Quiet off of Siamese Dream). but we all have our own opinions I guess.

The Doinck
November 29th 2003



7 Comments


The only two things I disagree with are XYU, Porcelina of the Vast Oceans, and **** You (an Ode to No One), which I think should all be 5/5.

Also, I think I heard Billy say in an interview that there were originally 56 songs written for the album, making 28 tracks and 28 B-sides. I think that is pretty amazing, and shows how much of a genius Billy Corgan is/was.

behemoth
November 29th 2003



15 Comments


why is the album rated 5/5 when there were so many low-scoring songs? Surely the album could only be ranked as a 5/5 if every song scored that too...

BirdsOfFires
November 29th 2003



92 Comments


You gave WAY too many songs 5/5. Smashing Pumpkins rule, but if you rate out of 10, you could have gotten much more accurate ratings. Many of those 5/5 songs are 9 or 8/10 songs, IMO.

JmE
November 29th 2003



3 Comments


^
I agree with that, I thought about it... but I didn't. Alot of songs would have been 9's, closer to 8's.
But meh, 10 songs out of 28 songs were 5's. I went as low as 1.5... I didn't think it was too bad. The songs I'd reconsider would be Muzzle, To Forgive, and Bodies.

As far as giving the album a 5 out of 5:
It was a huge seller, and made the Pumpkins. They pulled off a 28 song release, and set the song sequence up perfectly. Listening to the whole thing through is epic. To be honest: no album, track to track, has excellent songs that are consistently a 5. In a world with higher standards, MCIS might not be a 5.

All in all, this was review moreso to see if I wanted to do this kind of stuff. I chose MCIS because it was the CD I knew best. I think I'll probably do more, and take on the -out of 10- system, among other things. Thanks for the replies.

moderaterock222
December 2nd 2003



121 Comments


first of all..i give you credit for reviewing a doube cd. this is possibly one of the most influential cd's i own, its probably not ym favourite cd though. its has some great songs on it, but there are 3 or 4 thta could have been left off the cd(like beautiful and we only come out at night).
reading the reviewe though, i just remembered all those great tracks on the cd. good review msotly even though i dont completely agree with the comments made

br3ad_man
Emeritus
December 12th 2003



2125 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

What an album this is....blew me away....

I'm not much of a fan of f*ck you to be honest

hybridofsound
December 13th 2003



131 Comments


Bloody good review man :thumb: I pretty much agree with you and this would have to be one of my favourite albums ever.

Griffin_Page
March 25th 2004



60 Comments


The Smashing Pumpkins were the first band I ever truly got into. I had listened to Zeppelin and the Beatles and Sabbath in my extreme youth, but come the end of elementary school/beginning of middle school this was the band that I loved. This album was one of my favorites, I loved it beginning to end. I have most of their cds.. in fact, I haven't listened to them in a very long time. Good review, and I'm off to listen to them again.

sr800bkAGAIN!
March 25th 2004



54 Comments


great CD. my brother bought it upon release, and it was the first i ever heard from the pumpkins. great review, i really like the in-depth history on them.

Scott Herren
March 26th 2004



192 Comments


How are so many songs rated higher than "In the Arms of Sleep"? It is tops on the album.

Senseless Apprentice
March 27th 2004



4 Comments


I heard that Lily was a song about masterbating to photos...but perhaps I heard wrong?

OrbDragon
March 28th 2004



152 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

[QUOTE=JmE]
Track 10: Cupid de Locke
Like the previous one, except this one is definitely a sappy love poem. Not too fond of it myself. These three tracks here are sort of a down time on the CD. I guess that's what you get for 28 songs, although some of the B-Side are quite good, and could have replaced songs like these. [2.5/5]

[/QUOTE]


This is actually one of the few Pumpkins songs I still like. It doesn't have that conventional angst-rock feel most Pumpkins tracks have. It's got a more unique feel to it.

Dante's Inferno (Thy Cursed)
March 31st 2004



1 Comments


[QUOTE=Senseless Apprentice]I heard that Lily was a song about masterbating to photos...but perhaps I heard wrong?[/QUOTE]

That's "Pictures Of Lily" by The Who.


Anyways, I really enjoy MCATIS as a whole. Everything flows just right to my ears. Great album, nice review :thumb:

SRTracer
May 1st 2004



9 Comments


Excellent review. I was just about to do my first and used the awesome search button and found yours. I agree with most everything said. However I give we only come out at night a 5/5 on lyrics. 2/5 on music. 5/5 on creativity and individuality. I think the pumpkins put out possibly the greatest alternative cd (set) of the 90's. This happens to be my favorite double cd set of all time. Great review once again :thumb: Mad props to you for taking on 28 unbelievable songs.

DFelon204409
Emeritus
May 1st 2004



3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This album is really overrated. I mean it's awesome but too many people praise this as invincible. Maybe I just know too many pretentious indie/alt-rock kids. I'm going to listen to it again to see if I can correct this blasphemous opinion!

DFelon204409
Emeritus
May 2nd 2004



3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Your comment is just not true.

sadisticmonkey
May 3rd 2004



107 Comments


this ranks #5 on my top 5 albums of all times.....

5/5



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy