by Tara Morgan
With so many bands grasping at new ways to sell records—from pay-what-you-want online downloads to limited edition box sets—it’s refreshing to hear that ’90s grunge rockers Pearl Jam are looking out for the little guys with the release of their ninth studio album Backspacer.
In addition to the album’s exclusive distribution deal with Target, Pearl Jam has also partnered with Record Store Day to make sure that Backspacer is available at indie record stores around the country.
Clocking in at a short 36 minutes, lead guitarist Mike McCready described Backspacer as "a tight, concise, rock ’n’ roll record with kind of pop or maybe new wave elements to it ... It’s a really quick record, but I like that element to it.” The album, which is the first since 1994's Vitalogy to feature lyrics exclusively written by Eddie Vedder, is notably less political than Pearl Jam’s previous Bush-era releases.
The band started streaming the entire new album on Myspace music today to hype fans up for the official release this Sunday, Sept. 20. To celebrate, the Record Exchange is burning the midnight oil on Saturday night and keeping their doors open to sell Backspacer on CD ($11.99) and 180-gram vinyl ($21.99) when the clock strikes midnight.
If you're a die-hard Pearl Jammer—or just miss the excitement of the Harry Potter release bonanzas—duck out of the Scout Niblett show at Neurolux for a couple of minutes before midnight this Saturday to get your very own copy of the Tom Tomorrow-illustrated Backspacer to show all your drunk friends.