Pearl Jam - Dark Matter Album


Andrew Watt and Pearl Jam entered the world at practically the same exact moment. The 33-year-old producer was born Oct. 20, 1990, the same week that Eddie Vedder traveled to Seattle from San Diego to meet his future bandmates for the first time. “They’ve said to me they were probably writing ‘Release’ while my mom was giving birth to me,” Watt says. “And then they played their first concert two days after that at the Off Ramp cafe. I don’t want to get too biblical about it, but it’s very, very strange.”

Given his band has delivered classics like Ten and (insert your own preference here, 10 Club members), it was a bold assertion. Clearly, Eddie feels they have an ace up their sleeve this time. About that. While the title of Pearl Jam’s 12th album refers to the hypothetical cosmic webbing holding the universe together, the ‘Dark Matter’ binding proceedings here is Andrew Watt. Known first for producing pop stars like Miley Cyrus and Dua Lipa, he’s increasingly been spearheading rejuvenative records for Ozzy Osbourne, Iggy Pop and The Rolling Stones. Having already worked on Eddie’s 2022 solo outing Earthling, he now tackles his ultimate goal: producing his favourite band.

At a taut 11 tracks, Dark Matter conspires to distil 32 years of Pearl Jam doing the sonic evolution into one totalising whole. It nails the brief. A boisterous slice of their Avocado era can be heard in the crunchy power chords of brilliant opener Scared Of Fear, while React, Respond captures Eddie’s therapeutic mantra keeping pace with a zig-zagging groove à la their early years.



1. Scared of Fear
2. React, Respond
3. Wreckage
4. Dark Matter
5. Won’t Tell
6. Upper Hand
7. Waiting for Stevie
8. Running
9. Something Special
10. Got to Give
11. Setting Sun

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