Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins fame and general awesomeness is well known for another thing — unapologetically speaking his mind. In a recent interview, he threw the band Soundgarden under the bus, saying that they reunited for monetary, not artistic, reasons.
Billy Corgan and Soundgarden have been going at it at least since a falling out at Lolla ’94, reports MSN, and he showed that he still bears a grudge in an interview given prior to a show in the Philippines last week.
“There are those bands that are essentially coming back only to make money,” Corgan says of Soundgarden, “playing their old albums, and maybe somewhere in the back of their minds they’re thinking there might be a future. I am not in that business, obviously. I condemn anybody who’s in that business but doesn’t admit [he's] in that business. When Soundgarden came back and they just played their old songs, great. I was a fan of Soundgarden, but call it for what it is. They’re just out there to have one more round at the till; same with Pavement and these other bands.”
Never mind that Soundgarden announced their own new album release date in November.
Bemoaning the general perceived drop in quality in the music industry, Corgan also said this:
“I saw in the last 10 years as the record sales went down for everybody, so did the connection — the emotional connection to the music. And here comes the rise of music made by people who don’t really care about music … They want to be famous. They want to be on American Idol. They want to be in the spotlight. They have no respect for the people that came before them. They have no respect for the tradition of music, they have no respect for the blood and tears that have been spilt by great musicians all over the world — many of whom will never even know their name.”
Corgan still sees some positive examples of music in the industry today:
“Radiohead’s an example — very high arc, very high message and still very popular. But for the most part, the charts are dominated by music that’s essentially dumbed down — repetitive melody, style, tone, texture and message because it reaches the most [number] of people. So it’s amazing if you let people be with you on a deeper journey — they’ll actually figure it out because most people are deep.”
Never mind that Corgan has beefed with Radiohead before as well.
Do you agree with Billy Corgan? Did Soundgarden only reunite for the money? Is music taking a nose-dive in quality?