05. Toes Across The Floor
08. Car Seat (God\'s Presents)
10. The Duke
11. St. Andrew\'s Fall
12. New Life
13. Moutful Of Cavities
** When burning to CD-R, it is best to use the "disc at once", or "no gaps" option on your burning software with this release.**
From the onset, Blind Melon eluded simple musical categorization. They weren't grunge moaners, or alternative posers, or nouveau hippies--just five guys who took a classic FM sound and molded it to their own requirements. So when "No Rain" began climbing the charts, it was hard not to cheer on their progress through the sea of plaid-shirt mediocrity. On SOUP, Blind Melon throw the last of their caution to the wind, weaving a quilt of familiar classic-rock colors out of the kind of threads that hadn't been seen in these parts since the AOR heyday of the mid-'70s.
Opening (and closing) the album to the strains of a New Orleans brass band is an announcement that, as far as instrumentation goes, all bets are off. In this, SOUP evokes such '70s progressives as Led Zeppelin and Jethro Tull--expanding on the heavy blues boogie with unexpected touches. "Toes Across the Floor" switches from a spacey, Pink Floyd-esque mysterioso verse to an up-tempo, raga-ish chorus that's packed with a flute, some maracas and Shannon Hoon leading a faux traditional Hawaiian chorus, among other things. "Dumptruck" veers schizophrenically between jazzy strides, particularly in the inspired interplay between bassist Brad Smith and drummer Glen Graham, and the fuzzed-up psychedelic funk of Roger Stevens and Christopher Thorn's guitars.
In between, there are simpler, down-home evocations of acoustic roots (both "Walk" and "Skinned" benefit from the addition of traditional string instruments) and groove-oriented, Zep-style work-outs ("2X4"). What SOUP boils down to is a sometimes-exhilarating hodgepodge of extremely varied ingredients--one that reaffirms Blind Melon's choice to cook with their own instincts rather than with modern rock styles.