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Classic Albums

CA27 Smashing Pumpkins – Siamese Dream

It’s time once again when the dynamic Riot Act duo delve deep into one of their favourite albums for a feature length special. It’s Remfry’s turn and his pick is 1993’s Siamese Dream, the 2nd full-length studio album from Chicago alt rock legends The Smashing Pumpkins.

After the unexpected commercial success of the Pumpkins’ debut 1991 album Gish, critics began to peg the band as ‘the new Nirvana’, which put bandleader and predominant songwriter Billy Corgan under unwanted pressure ‘to make the next album to set the world on fire’. Siamese Dream never gained the commercial success of Nirvana’s Nevermind, but it did become a beloved soundtrack to the lives of many disenfranchised and disaffected youth who felt like they didn’t fit in with the status quo.

Like their peers, Smashing Pumpkins concerned themselves with dark lyrical subject matter, but they married those themes to music that felt jubilant and triumphant, creating a contrast in songs like Today and Hummer which made them all the more affecting. Meanwhile, songs such as Soma and Mayonnaise showed a truly developed sense of beautific serenity that was far beyond many of their contemporaries.

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128 – Smashing Pumpkins, Wardruna, Viagra Boys and Lonely The Brave

This week, we try to kick into 2021 properly, but not before casting our critical eye over Smashing Pumpkins’ 11th studio album CYR which came out at the tail end of 2020. 


Releases covered from 2021 include Wardruna’s Kvitvran, Viagra Boys’ Welfare Jazz and Lonely the Brave’s The Hope List. Steve and Remfry also pay tribute to New York Dolls guitarist Sylvain Sylvain and acknowledge that Phil Spector’s died. 

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47 – The Opposite of Hyperbole (Download 2019 Review)

Remfry is away this week, sampling the delights of Amsterdam (more of that next week), but fear not, our good friend Matt Stocks is here to step into his shoes to talk through all the highlights of this years Download festival. Steve and Matt chat about the great (Clutch, Power Trip), the pathetic (Godsmack) and the Tool (Tool). Plus all the other high and lowlights. There’s also a trade off, featuring Kilkenny alt-rock underdogs Kerbdog’s On The Turn and the groundbreaking, proto-riot grrl punk rock of X Ray Spex Germfree Adolescents, and details of YOUR invite to Riot Act’s upcoming 1st birthday party.

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18 – Burned on the Retina of my Mind? (feat. Mike Vennart)

With just 31 days left of 2018, Steve and Remfry delve into albums released over the past 11 months that they missed first time around. In the first part of this two part round-up, the boys look at albums by The Armed, itoldyouiwouldeatyou, Louise Lemón, Ovlov, Kississippi, Ólafur Arnalds and Twenty One Pilots.

Elsewhere, Remfry sat down with current Vennart/ex-Oceansize main man Mike Vennart to discuss his top five Iron Maiden songs. Remfry stuck around to review the show as well as shows from Pijn, Mogwai, Earthtone9 and Pitchshifter, whilst Steve went to see Therapy?. Plus, this week’s trade-off is The Smashing Pumpkins’ 2011 Oceania for Sugar’s Copper Blue.

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17 – Police Academy 7: Ron Perlman’s Regret

Steve and Remfry aren’t just fountains of musical knowledge, they are massive cinephiles as well. This week the guys wax lyrical over the relative merits of comedy classics Police Academy 7: Mission To Moscow and See No Evil, Hear No Evil. When they can be bothered to talk about music there are reviews on the latest releases from Smashing Pumpkins, Mumford And Sons, Failure and Azusa. Plus a trade off involving the self titled debut album by Gravity Kills and Marriages Kitsune EP. And we are once again joined by, literally, everybody’s friend Jamie Lenman for another ‘The World According to Jamie Lenman’, this time on Queen’s utterly maddening Hot Space album. Right, we’re off to lawyer up before Kevin Spacey hears this.

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12 – Silly Billy and the Infinite Weirdness (feat. Greg Puciato and Steven Alexander from The Black Queen)

Steve and Remfry went to see the original Smashing Pumpkins line-up (shhhh, don’t talk about Darcy!) at London’s most soulless shameful shit-shed Wembley Arena… turns out there was A LOT to talk about! Remfry managed to catch a bunch of other shows as well, including much-hyped masked marauders Sleep Token, Part 1 of Brighton label Small Pond’s Enjoy Sugoi festivities and The Black Queen in Nottingham.

Speaking of which, Greg Puciato and Steven Alexander from The Black Queen both sat down with Remfry before the show to talk about their new album Infinite Games, The Dillinger Escape Plan and Chris Cornell (amongst other things). Album reviews this week come from Greta Van Fleet, Tom Morello, Shining and mewithoutyou and this week’s trade-off is Grade’s fourth and final album Head First, Straight To Hell in exchange for Wild Throne’s one and only album Harvest of Darkness.

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02 – Testicular Embolisation, You First (feat. Andy Cairns from Therapy?)

Stephen and Remfry discuss the world of alternative music this week off the back of some painful experiences. Remfry had his ears ruined by seeing Employed To Serve, Rough Hands, and Leeched. Stephen is smarting from an operation on his… well, you’ll see! It’s pretty gross. Let’s move on. 

The boys review the latest records from Scars On Broadway, Dirty Projectors, Night Verses, Birds In Row, and the debut EP from Urne. There is also talk about some questionable decisions made by The Smashing Pumpkins on their recent 30th anniversary show, the theological metaphors surrounding the stunning new Behemoth video, and we are joined by our first ever guest; Therapy? frontman Andy Cairns who gives us an in depth look at their hugely underrated 2000 album Suicide Pact, You First.