The glory days of Pachyderm Studio
As the release of In Utero creeps toward its 20th anniversary, and as studios nationwide shrink under the decreased demands of a cash strapped customer base, the grand analog meccas like Pachyderm Studio find themselves becoming more and more spectral by the day.
For now, Pachyderm still functions. Despite a February foreclosure scare and the looming problem of overhead and decreased revenues, bands like Baby Guts, Droids Attack and Gospel Gossip have still found their way into its vaunted live room, and have emerged with pleasant results.
But, lest we let mismanagement and dour economic circumstances cloud the picture, the place and its history are still cultural touchstones of profound beauty and relevance. Head below the jump for a video dump of some things that continue to give Pachyderm a heavy name.
Nirvana-- "Heart Shaped Box"
A vacuum of apathies and Teutonic guitars, the first single from In Utero showcases everything Steve Albini loved about Pachyderm's live room. In particular, pay attention to Grohl's drums in the chorus. A crackly YouTube listen won't do it justice, but you should still be able to hear the trademark smack and delay that gave Pachyderm its name in 1993.
Live-- "Lightning Crashes"
Throwing Copper was one of the great commercial successes of the grunge era, and "Lightning Crashes," along with "I Alone," defined the band's sound. Recorded at Pachyderm in 1994, the album sold over 8 million copies, going platinum an astonishing 8 times.
Soul Asylum-- "Black Gold"
Local heroes Soul Asylum cut their breakout disc Grave Dancers Union at Pachyderm in 1992. The most enduring and recognizable single, "Runaway Train," became an anthem for the abduction scare that scarred the early part of the decade. But it's "Black Gold" that more accurately summarizes their sound of this time, and puts Pachyderm's live room on display.
Babes in Toyland-- "Handsome and Gretel"
The first single from their outstanding major label debut Fontanelle captured everything overpowering and strident about the local all-girl 3-piece. Again, the drums are a proud showcase of Pachyderm's acoustics. (Note that this is not an official video.)