Soundgarden Guitarist Kim Thayil: ‘There’s Still Things We Want to Release’
Following Soundgarden's recent nomination for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the band's guitarist Kim Thayil has responded to the rockers' recommendation. In addition, the musician considered possibilities for future Soundgarden reissues as well as unreleased material from the group.
Indeed, calling the Rock Hall nod important "for the legacy of Soundgarden," Thayil opened up about the nomination that finds the Seattle band on the 2020 ballot among other rock heavyweights such as Judas Priest, Motorhead and more. But while Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell's 2017 death had legally "stalled" work on the band's final material, the guitarist nevertheless looked to the future of Soundgarden's discography.
"Well, there's still catalog issues to address," Thayil told Billboard Tuesday (Oct. 15). "There's still things we want to release — old tapes, some live performances. So in that regard there is a current concern. But also looking back in terms of the legacy, something like this nomination is important. I never had a chance to look back like that and understand it in this way, in terms of the legacy and the body of work we've completed to this point."
Citing the absence of a public release of 1990's Louder Than Live — the concert album captured at Hollywood's storied Whisky a Go Go issued on home video that same year — the guitarist discussed other Soundgarden material that could eventually emerge. That includes a probable anniversary redux of the live record's parent album.
"The Louder Than Love album just passed its 30 anniversary," Thayil said. "We were very busy this year with other anniversary releases and, of course, the Artists Den release, but Louder Than Love will get a special package, probably to celebrate its 31st anniversary. And I think we'd like to put the Louder Than Live album out; It was released promotionally back in the day but never available commercially."
He continued, "There's stuff we recorded back in the early days with Sub Pop, just low-budget eight-track stuff we did with Jack Endino that never came out. In terms of stuff we're working on, that's kind of static right now. At some point we hope to work on that and complete the material we were writing."
Soundgarden's breakthrough Superunknown celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2019. The Artists Den release Thayil referenced above is live concert film and album Soundgarden: Live from the Artists Den, released earlier this year. Twelve months ago, the musician admitted a Soundgarden reunion among surviving members isn't likely.
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