Sound — 10
The sounds recorded in this CD were amazing. Chris and Alain Johannes played excellent acoustic and electric parts with deep instrumental/vocal harmony. Several nice solos were also played by Johannes in 'Mission', 'Flutter Girl', and 'Steel Rain' that had many colorful notes but were kept short enough that they would not take away from the other riffs. The drumming was also very well done. Fellow Soundgarden member Matt Cameron played on 'Dissapearing One', but most the songs was played by Josh Freese (A Perfect Circle, Black Light Burns). His drumming solo in the outro of 'Follow my Way' was excellent. Greg Upchurch (Puddle of Mudd, 3 Doors Down) also played drums on one track and on the tour with Cornell. As for Bass (Ric Markmann) and Synthesizers (Natasha Schneider), their contributions added different dimensions to the sound scape in the songs as well. I saw his band (Johannes, Scheider, Upchurch and Markmann) play this on the road in '99 and they did an excellent job with this somewhat difficult material.
Lyrics — 10
Many people say Cornell's lyrics are deep and captivating, and I have to agree. In 'Moonchild', he sang "Come on moonchild, you're so far away tonight. The door is falling open and we're flying wild. Come on moon flower, You're so far away from now. You could bloom forever in the hour." The lyrics are not overly complex but they are very original and not repetitive like many mundane modern band singers. Cornell also likes to write melodies & lyrics that stray from the standard 4 beats per measure, which gives his melodies interesting rhythm and flow as well. Per measure.
Overall Impression — 10
I thought that Cornell was very inventive and took a modern approach to songwriting that bears similarities to artists such as the Beatles, Yes, and Pink Floyd among other more modern bands. Cornell did start writing songs of this caliber in Soundgarden's 'Down on the Upside', but they separated over issues of the band's future directions. When I heard 'Can't Change Me' on the radio, I was so happy to hear Cornell's work that I went and bought the CD right away. I loved Soundgarden's later work and Chris Cornell did not dissappoint me with his solo efforts. The album does span several different genres, such as: R&B, Rock, Acoustic/Folk, Experimental, and slight bits jazz/funk in the arrangements. I think this was a good formula, because he essentially created different experiences for each song that brought him a wider and diverse audience. If I lost it, I would buy it again, definitely!