September 25, 2003

Test Spin: Wellwater Conspiracy

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When I was ten years old Pearl Jam became the first band I fell in love with. Since then they’ve had about fifty drummers, the latest of which being Matt Cameron, a former member of Soundgarden. Aside from those grunge icons, he’s involved himself with some other side projects, including the abysmal “Hero” single from Spider-Man, and this offering, the Wellwater Conspiracy.

Thankfully, the songs on Daybed are all better than “Hero,” but at first they seem only slightly more interesting. Daybed’s first four songs are standard rock songs, hampered by bland vocals and awkward verse-to-chorus transitions. The album takes a sharp turn toward the slightly experimental on its sixth song, “Rebirth.” The track builds off of two simple electronic loops that complement each other, and follow a drum machine beat. At certain moments — and I emphasize moments — on “Rebirth” (as well as the closer, “Dresden Overture”) the guitars sounds like those of Godspeed You Black Emperor! I say this because these songs represent the second half of the album, in that they sound like what one would expect from such a side project: a guy from a more famous/serious band who just wants to experiment a little. And while the results aren’t necessarily all that memorable, some parts made me say, “that was neat,” which is good enough for me.

Archived article by Ross McGowan