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The grunge titans who emerged from rainy Seattle back in the Eighties called it a day in 1997, going their separate ways for more than a decade. But in 2010 they reconvened, put their differences behind them and returned better than ever.

Early releases on legendary label Sub Pop Screaming Life and Fopp saw the band gain notoriety before they signed with indie label SST in the late Eighties and released their debut long-player, Ultramega OK, fusing elements of psychedelia, classic rock and punk. They moved to A&M records for follow-up Louder Than Love and then Badmotorfinger in 1991, but it wasn’t until their fourth album three years later that they really hit paydirt. 

Superunknown saw the band crash land into the mainstream, scoring great commercial success as they sailed to the top of the US Billboard charts. Their most radio friendly album to date, it had a great pop sensibility but did not lose their hard rock leanings and integrity. Singles Black Hole Sun and Spoonman picked up Grammy awards apiece, but this high point would not last. 

Follow-up Down On The Upside came in 1997 but behind the scenes there was disharmony brewing. The band split with members cropping up in the likes of Audioslave and Pearl Jam. It took 12 years for the band to reunite, and last year’s sixth album King Animal saw them serve up one of their best yet, fused with their distinctive sound and influences with a 10-strong collection of cracking rock classics. Been Away Too Long opened the album, and they were not wrong.

Brixton Academy, SW9 9SL
Sep 18 & 19 | Doors at 7pm |  £40+ 

Tube | Brixton  
o2academybrixton.co.uk

Photo: Getty


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London gig: Soundgarden play Brixton Academy on September 18 and 19
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