Whatever new music you might have been expecting from Pearl Jam, this track is probably far from it – and even as huge fans of their past work, we’re psyched about this musical twist. “Dance of the Clairvoyants,” which hit the airwaves today, is a mod track that many longtime fans are applauding for both its surprisingly synth-y sound and crucial subject matter. The bass-powered, aggressively-delivered track is the first sneak peek of Gigaton. Their much-anticipated eleventh studio album, Gigaton (due out on March 27th), ends a seven-year wait since 2013’s Lightning Bolt. The accompanying music video for “Dance of the Clairvoyants” also came out today, adding another layer of intensity and intrigue.

The video’s hyperlapse nature footage, which includes hardworking bees (terrifyingly endangered in the current ecological crisis) and fragile arctic scenes, bolsters the recurring lyrical themes in “Dance of the Clairvoyants.” When Eddie Vedder sings, “The looser things get, the tighter you become,” it’s unifying; you can almost picture a mass of people organizing and fighting back together. In the context of other pieces like “Collecting up the forget-me-nots, not recalling what they’re for,” the environmental subject matter remains evident. If there were any doubts, the album artwork features a well-known photo by Canadian photographer/filmmaker/marine biologist Paul Nicklen entitled “Ice Waterfall.” Taken in Svalbard, Norway, it depicts the Nordaustlandet ice cap gushing high volumes of meltwater.



One part of the lyrics has even been raising some eyebrows today, making us all the more curious to get ahold of that official lyric booklet once available. We’re pretty sure we’re hearing: “I know the girls wanna dance away their circumstance / I know the boys wanna grow their dicks and fix and file things.” Whether or not that’s spot on, Vedder’s incisive delivery is so great, we’d be remiss not to mention the line. Learning more about the track from a SiriusXM segment on PJ Radio, we were equally surprised that a song with so much synergy came together somewhat separately in the studio. Stone Gossard first describes how he started hammering on the bass while Matt Cameron was experimenting with electronic drums (impressively, Cameron later recorded his drum machine part on real drums, aside from one electronic hi-hat in the mix). “So a few weeks later, unbeknownst to me, Jeff Ament came in and threw on that arpeggiated keyboard line…” said Gossard, explaining how later on, “Mike McCready came in and put that guitar part over the top of it.”

In a press release, Jeff Ament shared, “I can’t tell you how proud I am about this group of songs. As you know, we took our time and that benefited us taking more chances. ‘Dance’ was a perfect storm of experimentation and real collaboration, mixing up the instrumentation and building a great song, and Ed writing some of my favorite words yet, around Matt’s killer drum pattern. Did I mention Mike’s insane guitar part and that Stone is playing bass on this one? We’ve opened some new doors creatively and that’s exciting.” Mike McCready was also quoted in a recent press release. “Making this record was a long journey,” said McCready. “It was emotionally dark and confusing at times, but also an exciting and experimental road map to musical redemption. Collaborating with my bandmates on Gigaton ultimately gave me greater love, awareness and knowledge of the need for human connection in these times.”

The band has been building suspense for the new stuff coming in 2020 in creative ways that seem to intentionally bring people together. An interactive map with a handful of coordinates around the globe pointed fans to real-life clues pasted up on the streets, and emails to fans released individual song titles in a similarly puzzle-piece way. See below for Pearl Jam’s just-released tracklisting for the twelve-song Gigaton, co-produced by Pearl Jam and Josh Evans. You can find Pearl Jam’s North American tour dates coming up in March and April here, in addition to their previously-announced European summer tour. While you’re plotting a plan to go see them, don’t forget to preorder Gigaton right here.


1. “Who Ever Said”

2. “Superblood Wolfmoon”

3. “Dance of the Clairvoyants”

4. “Quick Escape”

5. “Alright”

6. “Seven O’Clock”

7. “Never Destination”

8. “Take The Long Way”

9. “Buckle Up”

10. “Come Then Goes”

11. “Retrograde”

12. “River Cross”



Article: Olivia Isenhart




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