The Daily Mash-Up

Tuesday, September 01, 2015 This Week's Paper

“I only ever really wanted a break,” Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell sings on “Been Away Too Long,” the lead track from “King Animal,” his band’s first new album since the Clinton Administration. Dude, not allowed any more. You take it way too far.

"Been Away" showed up about midway through the seminal grunge band's epic Thursday night performance at Seattle’s Paramount Theatre, the first half of a two-night stand that will wrap up tonight. The song was one of many reminders of time and potential wasted between the quartet's late '90s breakup and its surprise comeback, as “Nudedragons,” in 2010. Ah, the hits they could have had. Instead, they went AWOL for 14 years and left us at the mercy of Nickelback. Jerks.  

Soundgarden - also guitarist Kim Thayil, bassist Ben Shepherd and drummer Matt Cameron – had no opener and played for two hours and change. Their set was both grunge nostalgiafest - they went all the way back to “Hunted Down,” their debut single for Sub Pop from 1987 - and a testament to the band's lasting relevance; these guys still rock harder than 90 percent of the milquetoast clogging up the rock charts these days. And few heavy bands craft cuts that are so melodic and stick-in-your-head hooky.

I posted the full set list earlier. But highlights included the sludgy, once again timely “Gun,” the darkly bombastic “Day I Tried to Live” and the frantic, bird-flipping “Ty Cobb.” A cameo by Mike McCready on “Tighter and Tighter” won't do much to dispel the rumors of a Soundgarden-Pearl Jam megatour that have been floating around the Internet. But the athletic, hard-hitting Cameron looked up to challenge of double duty in both his bands. Well, all three of his bands if they throw in some Temple of the Dog. Which, you know, they'd have to.

It was a satisfying if not perfect show. Sound quality varied depending on where you stood in the room. And in lieu of weaker cuts from the new disc, like “Taree” and “Worse Dreams,” I would have liked to have heard “Burden in My Hand” and “Pretty Noose,” both on the official set list but skipped. But their head banging set closer “Beyond the Wheel” was so forebodingly grimy that all could be forgiven. Shepherd flung his axe and the formidable foursome made their exit. Their work was done.

Knights of the Soundtable, prepare to be rocked again Friday night.  

In our latest edition, we ran an interview with iconic actor, comedian and author Bill Cosby to preview his Feb. 10 appearance at the University of Puget Sound's Memorial Field House. And, as promised, here's another outtake from our interview.

In this clip, a question about all the kid-oriented material he's done over the years prompts a poignant account of how his deadbeat dad, an influential teacher and a youthful identity crisis motivated him to be a role model years later.

Tacoma Link tops 1 million riders

Annual ridership figures top all projections for buses and trains for Sound Transit.

Tacoma Link light rail line, for example, topped a million annual boardings for the first time since it opened in 2003.

That level of ridership helped Sound Transit set all-time annual ridership records in 2012 for boardings on its commuter trains, buses and light rail.

Sound Transit had an estimated 28 million boardings last year. Average weekday boardings topped 93,000 for the year.

The combined annual numbers were up almost 12 percent over 2011 and boardings on all Sound Transit services topped agency projections for the year.

“It was a great year for Sound Transit riders with more people than ever discovering how much time, money and frustration they can save by taking the trains or buses,” said Sound Transit Board Chair and Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy. “With so many more people using our services it will be vital for Sound Transit to maintain the high standards our riders have come to expect.”

Tacoma Musical Playhouse has announced that in the very near future the theater will undergo a major renovation in the auditorium area of the facility.

The purpose of the remodel is to increase the size of the stage area both on and offstage to better accommodate actors, backstage crew and sets, and to enhance the sound quality in the auditorium itself by adding an orchestra pit underneath the stage. This includes moving the sound booth to audience level and adding acoustic treatment to the auditorium walls.

“These changes will allow us to grow our productions and programs, and greatly enhance the TMP patron’s theatergoing experience,” said TMP founder Jon Douglas Rake.

Soundgarden set list

Just back from the first half of Soundgarden’s two-night stand at Seattle’s Paramount Theatre. Find info about Friday night's show here. Then check back later for a few pics and notes. Meanwhile, here’s what they played:

Soundgarden set list Paramount Theatre Feb. 7, 2013

Flower, Nothing to Say, Outshined, Jesus Christ Pose, Spoonman, Hands All Over, Gun, By Crooked Steps, Rhinosaur, Taree, My Wave, The Day I Tried to Live, Been Away So Long, Worse Dreams, Hunted Down, Drawing Flies, Eyelid’s Mouth, Blow Up the Outside World, Fell on Black Days, Live to Rise, Tighter and Tighter (with Mike McCready), Non-State Actor, Ty Cobb, Rowing

Encore: Rusty Cage, Beyond the Wheel

Tacoma Arts Month University Dental
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