June 21st, 2012 9:48am
There’s A World That Stares Out At Me
There’s something really perfect about how good Billy Corgan’s voice sounds whenever he sings the word “suffer.” In this song, the phrase “don’t make me suffer” is sung in bright notes that light up the melody like a neon sign. “Panopticon,” like a few other tracks on Oceania, plays to musical strengths and dynamics that Corgan has mostly distanced himself from in the past decade, but despite the familiarity, it doesn’t feel like a retread of his 90s material. There’s a different feeling to this stuff – it’s not quite as potent, but there is a sense of inner peace that is very appealing, especially in contrast with lyrics that contradict that bliss. Corgan can turn out gems even in his most fallow periods, so I wouldn’t say this is a “return to form.” I do think it’s wonderful to hear him reconnect with a more joyful sound, and to wholeheartedly embrace a sound that is his entirely his own.
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