Smashing Pumpkins - Greatest Hits


Format: CD
Label: VIR
Catalog: 11316
Rel. Date: 11/20/2001
UPC: 724381131626

Greatest Hits
Artist: Smashing Pumpkins
Format: CD

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The single disc is a collection of 15 of the most popular Smashing Pumpkins songs plus 2 never befor e available songs.


It wasn’t hard to say goodbye to Billy Corgan in the end. Not because heand his Smashing Pumpkins had overstayed their welcome, but for the simple reasonthat their demise was a fairly honorable one. Certainly for some, however, thePumpkins had become the bloated arena rockers they were initially perceived torally against. Still for so many others, the band never appeared all that differentfrom the four Chicagoans who emerged with the stunning alt.rock debut Gishin 1991.

This chronologically assembled retrospective proves both theories correct. Thedebut’s lush “Rhinocerous” and the Singles soundtrack number “Drown”(taken from the same recording period) rank as two of the best rock ballads ofthe ‘90s—the soaring, affecting stuff that Creed’s Scott Stappwould gladly sell his chest hair to write. But they only set the stage for 1993’scommercial breakthrough Siamese Dream. The seemingly impenetrable wallof guitar fuzz raised by producer Butch Vig may have often drowned Corgan’sthin whine but it didn’t eclipse the shimmering hooks of singles like “CherubRock” and “Disarm” or the sublime melancholy of “Today.”

With a platinum album in tow, the “rock genius” in Corgan’s giantbean began swirling out of control, eventually giving birth to what remains hismost ambitious project, Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. Althoughit may ultimately be his personal Frankenstein’s monster, each of the foursingles represented from the 1995 double album bonanza are much more palatablein this context—a useful tool for older admirers that bailed after SiameseDream. Free of the suffocating amount of material present on their respectiveLPs, songs like “Ava Adore”(1998’s Adore) can rock withas much verve as anything from Mellon Collie, while the sweeping “StandInside Your Love” (2000’s Machina/The Machines of God) sendschills as Jimmy Chamberlin proves his drum fills can still hit like carpet bombs.

But unlike the band’s surprisingly good 1994 b-sides record Pisces Iscariot,the limited edition bonus disc Judas O simply underscores Corgan’sweakness for editing. Fortunately, Rotten Apples never veers into suchself-indulgence, and that’s perhaps Corgan’s greatest achievement ofall.