Riot Act is hugely underrated

halvhalv Posts: 512
edited December 2013 in The Porch
Can't Keep is perfect album opener.
All or None is a perfect album ender. Right up there with Indifference and Immortality (not counting Foxy) as closers.
I Am Mine, Love boat Captain and Thumbing My Way are classics.
You Are is experimental PJ at their best. I think this song is easily one of their most overlooked.
Get Right, Green Disease and Save You are fun rockers. Get Right should be played live more often.

The weakest link for me has always been Cropduster. The album is a bit long and would have had a better flow without it.

It is easily one of the best sounding records they have released production wise. It's really warm and has a lot of space. Earlier albums sound almost tinny when you listen to them back to back.

The theme and lyrics for this album always take me back to the darkness of the early 2000's. 9-11, Bush administration, Irag/Afghanistan war, Roskilde. It's a heavy, deep, emotional record.

Love it.
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  • Agree with everything you said, except the Cropduster thing. I love that tune. And you forgot to mention GHOST...amazing song and easily one of my top 10.
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  • arqarq Posts: 7,855
    My favorite album
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  • It definitely is underrated. I used to absolutely hate the album.. then my friend sat me down and played it and I realized what a fool I had been.
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  • rival.rival. ChicagoPosts: 7,776
    appreciated it more and more after the latest three albums.

    riot act is truly pearl jam's last album of the first half of their career so i kind of built a soft spot for it.
  • jumbojetjumbojet Posts: 1,484
    What about badasses Help Help and Get Right? I think Riot Act is a favorite for hard-core fans. Too bad that it is played rarely live.
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  • ckravitzckravitz NJPosts: 1,666
    Definitely been a "grower" for me as well. Great album to spin fairly loud and just sit on the couch and soak it in.
  • Such a good album. All or None is the perfect finish to the record. Just wish they would break out a few of the songs a bit more often during the shows! (Especially All or None!)
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  • Definitely a lot of good tracks on Riot Act! I like Cropduster a lot, FWIW.
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  • WhyGo91WhyGo91 Posts: 639
    halv wrote:
    Can't Keep is perfect album opener.
    All or None is a perfect album ender. Right up there with Indifference and Immortality (not counting Foxy) as closers.
    I Am Mine, Love boat Captain and Thumbing My Way are classics.
    You Are is experimental PJ at their best. I think this song is easily one of their most overlooked.
    Get Right, Green Disease and Save You are fun rockers. Get Right should be played live more often.

    The weakest link for me has always been Cropduster. The album is a bit long and would have had a better flow without it.

    It is easily one of the best sounding records they have released production wise. It's really warm and has a lot of space. Earlier albums sound almost tinny when you listen to them back to back.

    The theme and lyrics for this album always take me back to the darkness of the early 2000's. 9-11, Bush administration, Irag/Afghanistan war, Rokilde. It's a heavy, deep, emotional record.

    Love it.

    Agree with you on highly overrated and it being one of the best sounding records. However, I do NOT agree with you about Cropduster. That song is one of the gems of that album if not the best song on there after Ghost. The guitars and drums on Cropduster just completely make it, plus Ed's lyrics over top: perfect. The album is one, if not, my favorite PJ album ever (Vs. and No Code are in there too). I love the artistic value that the album produces in its sound and lyrics. And it's a huge testament to how well the other members of the band can write, especially Matt. I've always given this album an A++ :thumbup:
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  • KCjamKCjam Posts: 111
    Agree with everything you said, except the Cropduster thing. I love that tune. And you forgot to mention GHOST...amazing song and easily one of my top 10.

    Agree with this post. Certainly Cropduster is a great song. My 2nd favorite on this album, just behind LBC. Also agree that overall this is a favorite of mine. Also my favorited PJ tour.
  • aennilaennil Posts: 415
    Riot Act is definitely not underrated in my book!
    It was the first Pearl Jam album that really, really hit me. And it has a very special place in my heart.
    The magical thing about the album is that it changes over time, and sort of grows/evolves along with me. I feel like there are so many layers in each song, that i am still just starting to experience. Such beauty!

    One thing i've noticed, that i can't explain why, is that i tend to play Riot Act more often after Lightning Bolt was released.
  • KCjamKCjam Posts: 111
    KCjam wrote:
    Agree with everything you said, except the Cropduster thing. I love that tune. And you forgot to mention GHOST...amazing song and easily one of my top 10.

    Agree with this post. Certainly Cropduster is a great song. My 2nd favorite on this album, just behind LBC. Also agree that overall this is a favorite of mine. Also my favorited PJ tour.

    I am referring to the album being an overall favorite. And that tour is the 2003 tour that I favor over the rest. Nashville "03 was just a classic show.
  • KCjam wrote:
    KCjam wrote:
    Agree with everything you said, except the Cropduster thing. I love that tune. And you forgot to mention GHOST...amazing song and easily one of my top 10.

    Agree with this post. Certainly Cropduster is a great song. My 2nd favorite on this album, just behind LBC. Also agree that overall this is a favorite of mine. Also my favorited PJ tour.

    I am referring to the album being an overall favorite. And that tour is the 2003 tour that I favor over the rest. Nashville "03 was just a classic show.

    I loved that tour too. I went to 5 shows and they all blew me away. Boston 1 and 2, NYC 1 and 2 and Holmdel. I also loved listening to the boots from other shows. Esp. Uniondale, Buffalo, State College and Tokyo.
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  • I like the analysis in the first post, and think it's a very solid album.

    For me at the time, it was their best record since No Code. I really like the production and guitar tones, and more importantly, it sounded like Mike had been unleashed from the cage he'd been stuck in since the second album, as far as lead guitar is concerned. So many great solos on this one, prominent in the mix unlike the previous few records.

    As far as the songs, for me the two classics are "I Am Mine" and "Thumbing My Way," but right behind them are a lot of really good ones like "Can't Keep," You Are," "Get Right," "Green Disease" and especially "All Or None" (which I had the great fortune to hear live for the first time in L.A. last month! Speaking of great McCready solos...in G#m, no less...)

    Unfortunately, as mentioned above, the album is a bit long and does have several weak links that could be removed to both tighten it up and make it better: the two obvious duds for me are "Help, Help" and "Bushleager," totally lame songs IMO. And, despite the nobility of the sentiment and its inspiration, "Love-Boat Captain" has just never done much for me. Not a big fan of "1/2 Full" either.

    I've grown to love "Cropduster" over the years, and it was great to see Ed do "Arc" on one of his solo tours. I would REALLY love to hear them do "Get Right," but I have a feeling I never will. (Though with this band, you never know what oddity they might dust off years later!)

    Also, looking at this album's b-sides and outtakes just shows what great songs and sessions they had at the time. Especially "Down" and "Undone," what a fantastic album this would have been had they made it in lieu of the two I mentioned not liking.
  • YLed2YLed2 Des Moines, IAPosts: 5,533
    And the most underrated song is Help Help. Just love how that tune builds and builds and is such a different sound for them.

    And again to reiterate, All Or None is definitely one of their best album closers and certainly one of my favorite PJ songs. It truly is a masterpiece and just well put together.
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  • belfast1belfast1 Posts: 778
    No it's not - its got about four good songs on it and that's it :roll:
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  • halvhalv Posts: 512
    aennil wrote:

    One thing i've noticed, that i can't explain why, is that i tend to play Riot Act more often after Lightning Bolt was released.

    Me too!
  • vaggar99vaggar99 San Diego USAPosts: 3,078
    Riot act is a great album. It is definitely an album that says 'we don't care about radio play or mtv'.
    Perhaps the most artistic of all pj albums. A gem that is only known and appreciated by true pj fans.
  • wvueers1wvueers1 Phoenix, AZPosts: 61
    halv wrote:
    Can't Keep is perfect album opener.
    All or None is a perfect album ender. Right up there with Indifference and Immortality (not counting Foxy) as closers.
    I Am Mine, Love boat Captain and Thumbing My Way are classics.
    You Are is experimental PJ at their best. I think this song is easily one of their most overlooked.
    Get Right, Green Disease and Save You are fun rockers. Get Right should be played live more often.

    The weakest link for me has always been Cropduster. The album is a bit long and would have had a better flow without it.

    It is easily one of the best sounding records they have released production wise. It's really warm and has a lot of space. Earlier albums sound almost tinny when you listen to them back to back.

    The theme and lyrics for this album always take me back to the darkness of the early 2000's. 9-11, Bush administration, Irag/Afghanistan war, Roskilde. It's a heavy, deep, emotional record.

    Love it.


    I agree with the gist of your post . . . but you lost me when you said Cropduster is the weakest link ... R U Kidding? That F'n song nails it. "I was a fool because I thought I thought the world . . . turns out the world thought me." #truth
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  • FaezaMFaezaM Posts: 152
    LOVE everything on this album including Cropduster. ;)
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  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 26,571
    Riot Act started out as one of my least favorite Pearl Jam albums but it worked its way up my spinal chord into into my brain. It started out somewhere in the region of the lumbar vertebrae but with repeated listening it crept its way up to the brain stem, fanned out into the cerebellum, began to affect the limbic system and the amygdala, created increasingly strong leaps across synaptic vesicles, and then just took off.

    If I had to name one and only one favorite Pearl Jam record it would have to be Riot Act... just a tiny bit above No Code, and Yield.
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  • EraserheadEraserhead Stoke-on-TrentPosts: 2,622
    My second fave album after No Code. Amazing record.
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  • RicsardRicsard Posts: 1,933
    rival. wrote:
    appreciated it more and more after the latest three albums.

    riot act is truly pearl jam's last album of the first half of their career so i kind of built a soft spot for it.

    Yeah, Riot Act was a brave effort when it was released, it was obvious PJ made a huge leap into an even darker territory with it, and it took me years starting to appreciate, moreover love it!!! Its dark, but still uplifting vibe always reminded me of those gloomy The Cure records (a huge fan of them), however I am glad they put an end to that sad period.
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  • PearlJamAdamPearlJamAdam Powhatan VAPosts: 33
    I don't think Pearl Jam can make a bad album... I Love every song ever created by the band. If this is there worst album, they need to make ten more that are as shitty as this one.
  • VOLAREVOLARE Posts: 294
    When Riot Act came out I was listening to much heavier music at the time. I didn't play it enough compared to the earlier albums I loved. It wasn't until I picked up Benaroya Hall and loved that performance that I really got pulled back into playing Riot Act and giving it more rotations when I listened to Pearl Jam. Nice thing though was it always felt like a great new album every time I put it on even though Ive had it since it came out. For me Riot Act had a wonderful slow growth rate making it appreciated more and more as time went on.
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  • Second favourite album after Vs.
    Brilliant songs throughout.
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  • Can't Keep is one of my all time favorite PJ tunes. . . . I consider myself lucky to have seen EV play it solo. . . it's still one of my PJ white whales though.

    As far as the whole album goes. . . . I break it out here & there & am constantly discovering new things on it, but it has a long way to go for me to consider it as one of my favorites by PJ. In my opinion none of their releases since Yield have come close to the brilliance of those first 5 albums.

    Doesn't mean you folks are wrong though, it's all subjective. This thread WILL however inspire me to pull this album out again this week.

  • Can't Keep is one of my all time favorite PJ tunes. . . . I consider myself lucky to have seen EV play it solo. . . it's still one of my PJ white whales though.

    Yes! Been my of my favs since Riot Act came out! Happy that I've seen Eddie do it, but the PJ version is what I love.
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  • ckravitzckravitz NJPosts: 1,666
    Spinning now thanks to to this thread! Thanks!
  • ckravitz wrote:
    Spinning now thanks to to this thread! Thanks!

    +1

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