Monday, October 05, 2015

Glorious Ladies of Rocktober Song #3: "Cannonball" by The Breeders

Grunge had its share of female rockers, perhaps more than any other mainstream rock genre.  The Breeders formed in 1990 as a side project for Pixies bassist Kim Deal and Throwing Muses guitarist Tonya Donelly, whose groups toured together.  After putting out an album in 1990 (Pod, produced by Steve Albini), the members of The Breeders returned to their main bands.  The Pixies broke up in 1993, but Donelly went on to form Belly, so Deal (who sang lead vocals in The Breeders) recruited her twin sister Kelley to play guitar for the next album.  Drummer Jim MacPherson joined the fun, along with bassist Josephine Wiggs, who also played on the first album.

The band's second album, Last Splash, was released in August 1993, and went platinum in the U.S. by June 1994.  "Cannonball" is the band's signature song and biggest hit, getting up to #44 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #2 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart.  And, of course, the video on MTV -– directed by Spike Jonze and Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon -- gave the band a lot of exposure.  I love "Cannonball."  The song has a great groove to it, starting with that bass line that draws in your attention and that catchy little guitar riff.  The start-and-stop verses are relatively subdued before breaking into that distorted and loud chorus.  Just a great rock song, and such a perfectly '90s video, especially given that Kim Deal kind of reminds me of Claire Danes and Wiggs may very well be Susan from Seinfeld.

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