TITLE: 8-Way Santa
YEAR RELEASED: 1991
CHART ACTION: Hell, no.
SINGLES: Jinx, Jack Pepsi
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: No, sadly.
LINEUP: Tad Doyle, Kurt Danielson, Gary Thorstensen, Steve Wied
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Tad and Butch Vig unleash holy hell.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Thick, fat riffs. Vocals that will (for the most part) scare your grandmother. Surprisingly complex musicianship underneath the clatter. This may be the grungiest album in all of the Seattle scene.
Surprisingly, there are a couple of tracks where Tad Doyle actually sings instead of yowls. But that’s neither here nor there. Most every song has a huge riff that carries through the song, and surprisingly hooks enough for you to have the tracks embedded in your brain.
The album kind of winds down into a couple of the quieter tracks., but still with a great guitar tone and melody. Butch Vig does great work letting Tad be Tad. Essential grunge here.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: It was a good thing Sub Pop had the points from the Nirvana album, since Tad was involved in two suits. First, the original cover (of the long-haired guy cupping his ol’ lady’s breast) was a photo the band found at a yard sale, and the couple didn’t appreciate it.
Then, the fantastic track “Jack Pepsi” was a single, but the cover parodied the famous Pepsi logo. Pepsi did the ol’ cease and desist.
Oh, and the title is a reference to a type of LSD blotter.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes. Demos, b-sides, and outtakes. They all are just as heavy.
GRADE: A+: This may be another ‘homer’ call, but it encapsulates grunge before it all went strictly commercial.