Kim Thayil Opens Up About Unreleased Soundgarden Songs

Kim Thayil, the quiet Nigel Tufnel to Chris Cornell's David St. Hubbins, piped up to Rolling Stone about the unreleased Soundgarden tracks that will b

Kim Thayil, the quiet Nigel Tufnel to Chris Cornell's David St. Hubbins, piped up to Rolling Stone about the unreleased Soundgarden tracks that will be on the upcoming b-side, and the incredibly minor, almost nonexistent obstacles standing in the way of a Soundgarden reunion:

What will be on the box set?

Stuff that was released only in Europe, Australia, and Japan, on movie soundtracks, sessions we did for John Peel in England, and then stuff that was never released — demo versions of things, alternate versions of songs, and songs that were recorded, but never released in any form, that we would simply have to mix and maybe re-edit, which would be like brand new Soundgarden songs. Songs that no one's heard, except for maybe a few people close to Soundgarden's circle.

What are some titles of these unreleased tracks?

"Dirty Candy," "Ocean Fronts," "Open Up," "Summation" — that was a pretty heavy song, in 5/4 time. "Ocean Fronts" is a little bit more of a trippy, arpeggiated song. A song called "Beast," which is going to sound exactly like the title. "Beast" and "Summation" were really strong songs live — from the mid-late '80s. I cannot believe those two songs have never been released. "No Shame" is another title. There's enough stuff out there to fill up three or four albums. There's enough original stuff that's been released but hasn't been compiled — B sides — to make an album. There's enough covers to make an album. There's enough remixes that Moby, Steve Fisk and Bill Rieflin did, that could constitute a pretty interesting EP. There's enough unreleased stuff to make an album. It's just getting the business and creative machine on the same page.

I'm salivating at the thought of an album's worth of Soundgarden covers. And the reunion:

Ben told me he thinks that if Soundgarden were to get back together, you guys could pick up exactly where you left off.

I think he's right. We all play enough and are acquainted with the material enough that I think it would take a few rehearsals. When Ben, Matt, and I got together with Tad, it was like falling off our bike and getting back on.

That said, could Soundgarden ever reunite?

People would have to want to. I think more importantly, tending to the merchandising catalog is something that would be satisfying for the band members and for the fans. I never say never ... but I'm not losing too much sleep over it, either.

I predict Coachella 2010 at the latest.

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