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Then & Now: Soul Asylum

Soul Asylum

Soul Asylum Then

Soul Asylum were kicking around the Minneapolis punk scene since the mid ’80s. But in 1992, thanks to alternative music’s new domination of the mainstream, they scored a major hit with their sixth album, ‘Grave Dancers Union,’ which just missed the Top 10 and spawned four modern-rock hits, including ‘Runaway Train,’ their only Top 10 pop hit. They followed up three years later with ‘Let Your Dim Light Shine,’ their only Top 10 album. Their only No. 1 modern-rock hit, ‘Misery,’ was the record’s first single.

After that, Soul Asylum pretty much fell off the map. Their next album, 1998’s ‘Candy From a Stranger,’ debuted at No. 121 and quickly disappeared. Its lone charting single didn’t even crack the Top 20 at modern-rock radio.

Soul Asylum

Soul Asylum Now

In 2012, Soul Asylum released their 10th album, ‘Delayed Reaction,’ their first record since 2006’s ‘The Silver Lining.’ It debuted at No. 160 on the chart. The band’s two key players — frontman Dave Pirner and guitarist guitarist Dan Murphy — were joined by former Replacements bassist Tommy Stinson (original bass player Karl Mueller died of throat cancer in 2005). Murphy quit the group late last year, leaving Pirner as its only original member. Soul Asylum will soon head out on the LP Tour (featuring Big Head Todd and the Monsters, the Wailers and Matthew Sweet), where they’ll play ‘Grave Dancers Union’ in its entirety.

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