It was recently announced that grunge supergroup Temple of the Dog will be embarking on their very first tour, 25 years after the release of their wonderful self-titled (and only) album. The band, which consists of Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell and Pearl Jam members Mike McCready, Jeff Ament, Stone Gossard and Matt Cameron, will be touring in November with all its original members. Every ticket to all five shows sold out immediately.
TOTD was initially created by Chris Cornell as a tribute to Andrew Wood, the singer of Mother Love Bone, who died of a heroin overdose in 1990. The band recorded one album, released in 1991, and while it wasn’t an immediate success, the explosive release of Pearl Jam’s debut album Ten in 1992 brought more attention to the album. They played one proper concert ever, along with a few opening slots and festival sets. In the time since, a smattering of short sets and brief performances of songs like Reach Down and Hunger Strike have occasionally appeared during Pearl Jam, Soundgarden and Audioslave sets, and most recently in 2015 at a one-off Mad Season reunion show gig.
In a new interview with Rolling Stone, TOTD have revealed information about what to expect from the live shows, new music and more. Rehearsal have not begun yet as Pearl Jam have been on tour, and while the band haven’t finalised any setlist plans, they’re looking to do a lot more than just play the album start to end. “We’ve discussed what other songs we might play in addition to the 10 songs from the album,” says Cornell. “But it was mostly left on the table to be discussed as a later date. It’s still a mystery to me.” McCready added that, “Playing albums in sequence can be awesome or it can be very limiting. I hope we mix it up a little bit.” This might even include Mother Love Bone songs, which “makes a lot of sense,” according to Cornell. “There are also some songs that Andy wrote outside of Mother Love Bone that may or may not be something we can do. There’s some other songs from that period we discussed, but there’s been no decision made about anything other than what’s on the album.”
One of the questions on many lips is whether or not Eddie Vedder will make an appearance, although it seems likely. “I can’t say anything about that,” McCready cryptically told Rolling Stone. “I don’t know if he is, and that’s kind of up to him. I would love it if he did.”
As to whether new music will be released, it’s unlikely, but they haven’t ruled anything out. “We’d have to feel really great about the songs,” said Cornell. “I don’t want to say they’d have to live up to the [first] album, but I wouldn’t want it to take away from it either. It was the same issue with reforming Soundgarden. I’m super excited about writing new songs as long as we don’t detract from what came before, and ultimately we did that. I think the same thing would apply to Temple.”
Image: Rolling Stone