Sound — 10
With its author embittered and just plain pissed at his life as a rock star how could this be the hook-filled classic the blue album was? Pinkerton has a very harsh sound to it, the treble is boosted way up making a very tinny sound, so very different from the thick crunch of the first album. Its lyrics are bitter, the bass is fuzzier than John Lennon's face during the bed-in for peace, and it's the best album ever. Wait, what?
Lyrics — 10
The lyrics are very angry, they're even bordering on emo (which I hate with a fiery passion). But in the end they are 110% honest, something not found in the cheesy similes and metaphores in emo. Rivers later said it was like getting drunk and spilling his guts at a party. It can be a bit hard to listen to at points with its complete honesty, but it tells a story no other album has in my recollection. It narrates River's journey from a rock star to a hermit and back. The words paint a narrative none of the mindless alternative scene can touch, they're not mindless thrashing, they're not bubble gum pop songs. They are a man with his heart on the line.
Overall Impression — 10
Yes it is hard to listen to, and yes it did unfortunately give birth to emo. But there is a soul on the tracks, there is a story beneath all the fuzzed out tones. Some people don't like to think about their music, but for me this album almost transends music. It is a spiritual experience for me, it phrases a part of my life so perfectly it's almost like reliving it. Some people are afraid of that kind of intensity, so I suggest they stay away.