Song Review: Pearl Jam- “Mind Your Manners”

When it comes to keeping things fresh and unexpected, Pearl Jam stand as experts.  The band has one of the most versatile catalogs of any band rooted in the Seattle grunge scene- ranging from the all-out furious (“Do the Evolution,” “Why Go”), to the beautifully melodic (“Just Breathe,” “Light Years”), to the emotionally powerful (“Black,” “Come Back.”)

Now, in wake of 2009’s smoothly-produced masterpiece, “Backspacer,” the band has called yet another audible- they have recorded a punk rock song.

Well…okay, “Mind Your Manners,” the band’s latest single, isn’t COMPLETELY a punk rock song, but it might as well be.  It’s fast, to the point, and plays like a backhand to the face.  Think “Spin the Black Circle” with a touch of Black Flag.

The song is like a 3 minute joyride in a hot-wired war vehicle – kicking into high gear with sputtering guitars and never stopping for air.

“Mind Your Manners” makes it clear that anything can happen on the forthcoming “Lightning Bolt.” Major Pearl Jam fans will immediately love the song.  Casual listeners might be a little confused at first, but will slowly conform to the track’s appeal.

Pearl Jam- “Mind Your Manners:”  4.5/5

Listen to “Mind Your Manners” Here:

10 Rock Artists Who Could Potentially Play a Superbowl Halftime Show

A major part of every Superbowl is its corresponding halftime performance;  it is during this time that millions of viewers are kept entertained by a high-profile musical artist.  Over the years, fans have been treated to a multitude of impressive performances ranging from The Who to ‘N Sync.

Specifically, the rock genre has been well-represented during recent Superbowls.  Generally, the NFL’s selections have been very good, but here are ten more rock acts that should at least be considered for a future halftime slot:

Foo Fighters– The Foos are clearly an ideal choice for any live performance, let alone the Superbowl.  Picture Dave Grohl and the boys belting out “My Hero” and “The Pretender” to legions of raving football fans; the image seems too perfect.

Van Halen– Despite their inevitable aging, Van Halen could still bring a lot of energy to the Superbowl with their library of timeless, hard-rocking hits.  Rumors of a Van Halen halftime show have been rising and falling for several years, and it’s easy to see why.

Red Hot Chili Peppers– The Chili Peppers have been at it for several decades now, but their live performances have only gotten better.  With a versatile catalog of hits, iconic stage presence, and a very large fan-base, the band would be a great fit for a major event like the Superbowl.

UPDATE: The Red Hot Chili Peppers are set to join Bruno Mars during the Superbowl XLVIII Halftime Show on February 2, 2014.

Eric Clapton– The legendary “slowhand” rocker may not be the most eccentric live performer, but he would bring a good show to the Superbowl in the same vein as Tom Petty or Paul McCartney.  Viewers could cool-down from the game’s first quarter action by observing a master craftsman at work on the fret board.

Elton John– Considering the classic rock trend of recent Superbowl halftime shows, it’s not unlikely that Elton John may eventually be considered to follow suit.  John could handpick just about any of his singles and still be guaranteed to have the entire stadium singing along.

Bon Jovi– Bon Jovi are one of those rare bands that appeal to a large mix of classic rock and modern rock fans.  In addition, next year’s superbowl is, in fact, set to be played at the New Meadowlands.   This almost seems unavoidable.

Pearl Jam– Pearl Jam would provide one of the, for lack of a better adjective, coolest halftime performances of all time.  “Alive,” “Even Flow” and “Life Wasted” would rock a football stadium to its feet, all while remaining accessible and bearable for a family audience.

Coldplay– Yes, the initial thought is sleep-inducing, but it would be ridiculous to not consider Coldplay in the running for an eventual halftime slot.  The British quartet are one of the most popular modern rock bands of the past decade and typically play high-profile television events anyway.

UPDATE: Coldplay served as the headlining act for the Superbowl 50 halftime show – performing alongside Beyonce and Bruno Mars.

Green Day– Whether you like or hate them, Green Day have developed themselves into an arena rock band with an impressive live show.  Up-tempo songs like “Basketcase” and “Know Your Enemy” would make a Green Day halftime show a lot of fun (assuming Billie Joe Armstrong would be able to handle the strict time constraints on the set).

Led Zeppelin– Okay, I decided to include a fantastical scenario.  Odds are, Zeppelin will never play the Superbowl, but nothing is impossible.  The band’s surviving members have reunited several times, even as recently as 2007.  Eventually, it will happen again.  As for the Superbowl, again, nothing is impossible.  One thing is for sure:  Roger Goodell would be paying a lot of money in exchange for what would most likely be the greatest music-related televised moment of the year.