Dear Chris Cornell,
I was only fifteen when Soundgarden broke up; too young to fully understand the significance of such an event. Truth be told, at that time I could probably only name one of your songs ("Black Hole Sun" obviously.) I'm told that you attempted a solo career after Soundgarden - a move I am glad I was blissfully unaware of. It was not a successful attempt and you soon ditched your efforts at becoming a solo artist to form Audioslave with the boys from Rage Against the Machine. It was during this time that I realized your genius. Audioslave's music was pure, the lyrics were inspired and your voice was amazing. Audioslave remains one of my favourite bands of all time.
Seven short years, and three albums, later Audioslave disbanded due to "irresolvable personality conflicts as well as musical differences." Which was disappointing but understandable - bands break up all the time. The fact that you were planning another solo release helped ease the pain of Audioslave's demise. Until I actually heard your solo album and it was mediocre at best, boring and pointless if we're being honest.
Which brings us to your latest solo effort.
You teamed up with Timbaland for this record, which is a funny choice for a rocker. I mean, I will admit to being a sort-of-a-little-bit-I-guess Timbaland fan. I enjoy listening to the music he produces for Justin Timberlake and Nelly Furtado, but I don't think I could name anything he's done on his own. And that type of music isn't the music I listen to for enjoyment - it's the music I have on my "get off your ass and exercise, fatty!" playlist on my ipod (yes, it's really called that.)
Your latest solo album was released last week and immediately the controversy started when Trent Reznor Twittered, "You know that feeling you get when somebody embarrasses themselves so badly YOU feel uncomfortable? Heard Chris Cornell's record?" (Which, I'm not going to lie, I thought was effing hilarious.)
After reading your cutting response ("What do you think Jesus would twitter?") I had to go out and buy your album to decide for myself. My conclusion after listening to the whole album (though my ears were begging me to turn it off midway through the first track. Let me just emphasize that - FIRST TRACK), is that you are either a completely clueless d-bag or an evil genius. I can't decide which.
Your latest solo album sounds like a Britney Spears album that you're singing on. Where are the guitars? Where is the grunge? WHERE IS THE ROCK?
The rock is lost, along with your dignity.
I could forgive your foray into pop music if it was good pop music. Like I said, I'm not a huge Justin Timberlake fan but I do listen to his music when I'm in a certain mood (a fat mood. Shut up.) However, I'm sad to say that there is not a single track on your album that I like enough to put on my workout playlist. Your new songs are upbeat and have catchy rhythms but in the wrong way. For example, I have had the chorus from your first track (you know, the song that made me want to stop listening to the album) stuck in my head all day. The chorus that goes, "That bitch ain’t a part of me. No that bitch ain’t a part of me. I said no that bitch ain’t a part of me. No that bitch ain’t a part of me." So you see, memorable just for the wrong reasons.
Chris Cornell, that sound you hear? Is Tom Morello laughing. Hysterically.
A Former Fan