Soundgarden’s Kim Thayil Still Doesn’t Like Billy Corgan
All is fair in grunge and war.
Things have been a little icy between Soundgarden and Smashing Pumpkins for a while now, stemming back to the ’90s but reignited around 2007 when both camps began making disparaging remarks about the other’s respective “reunion.” But it doesn’t look like these guys will be shopping for black T-shirts together anytime soon.
In a recent interview with the Dallas Observer, Soundgarden guitarist Kim Thayil managed to fit in a few more indirectly direct jabs at Smashing Pumpkins showrunner Billy Corgan and his control issues.
We feel confident that if the four of us all like an album, it’s going to do well. We don’t have one member who is deciding the composition of an album. You should know who I am talking about, but I am not going to name names. We have four guys who write songs here. We have four guys contributing material without someone calling bullshit on it. You follow me? There are many bands out there that are led by one guy who does all the writing? He might have some religious epiphany or some psychedelic experience and he will write all this material that can very easily suck. And the rest of his band feels like they have to play it. That is not Soundgarden. Consequently, we have never made a record that sucked.
Corgan told a radio station in 2012 that the recent feud began when Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell questioned the return of Smashing Pumpkins in 2007. “Chris Cornell was somebody I considered a friend, and would never have said a harsh word about,” Corgan said. “When [Smashing Pumpkins[ came back in 2007, he was quoted in an interview saying basically he didn’t consider our reunion to be, in quotations, to be ‘legitimate.’ I kind of have an elephant’s memory when it comes to somebody punching me in the face.”
So when Soundgarden reunited in 2010, Corgan was more than happy to throw in his two cents. “There are those bands that are essentially coming back only to make money — playing their old albums, and maybe somewhere in the back of their minds they’re thinking there might be a future,” said Corgan. “When Soundgarden came back and they just played their old songs, great. I was a fan of Soundgarden, but call it for what it is. They’re just out there to have one more round at the till; same with Pavement and these other bands.”
In response, Cornell jokingly said Corgan owes him $40,000 for helping him out in the past. “When Billy Corgan was completely broke, I got him a movie deal with director Cameron Crowe where he made $40,000,” said Cornell. “He was very happy about that, and he was specifically happy about the $40,000. So next time you see him, tell him he owes me my $40,000 back.”
Watch the Smashing Pumpkins’ Official Music Video for ‘Today’