Soundgarden 'Superunknown' 20th Anniversary Show

Webster Hall, New York (Photos)

by Sachyn Mital

5 June 2014

Two decades on, Superunknown remains a landmark album and the formidable Soundgarden played the entirety of it at a club show in New York.

Citi Presents Exclusive Soundgarden Performance Celebrating 20th Anniversary of 'Superunknown'

2 Jun 2014: Webster Hall — New York

On the eve of the remastered, deluxe re-release of their seminal album Superunknown, Soundgarden performed the entirety of the album at an exclusive club show in New York for Citi card holders. The price of admission? A mere $19.94. Ah if only tickets were normally so cheap. The many fans who lined up early for this show, some since 3 pm, or otherwise were begging to get in, probably remember such low prices. These days, the Soundgarden and Nine Inch Nails (whose 1994 The Downward Spiral came out on the same day as Superunknown) tour priced the best seats over $100, though some venues did offer $20 nosebleeds (dates below). If you didn’t get in, you did miss out on a unique experience but at least the whole concert will be broadcast on Sirius / XM Radio on Howard Stern’s Howard101 channel June 13 at 10 PM EDT.

In 1994, Webster Hall would have seemed impossibly small for a Soundgarden show, and that was still the case two decades later. If there was a bit less moshing than a show from back then would have inspired, the crowd were easily as loud and enthused about being there… Also unchanged over the decades: the power of this band, and the durability of their ’94 opus. In two decades, Cornell looks almost as ageless as Pharrell, and his voice is still incredible. He sounded terrifying on “Rusty Cage” (one of two songs from 1991′s Badmotorfinger that made up the encore) but as soulful as ever on the quieter tunes, like “Black Hole Sun,” “Fell on Black Days,” “The Day I Tried To Live” and “Like Suicide.” Kim Thayil, mostly retired between the band’s 1997 breakup and their 2010 reactivation, sounded fearsome and furious, his Nuclear Assault t-shirt a reminder of his roots, which always lay far from the pop charts. (

Chris Cornell said they would take the 70+ minute album at a “relaxed pace”, though there is no way to relax when being assaulted by Thayil’s heavy guitar riffs or Cornell’s howling or drummer Matt Cameron’s percussive hammering (he’ll be on the road with his other outfit, Seattle luminaries Pearl Jam following the SG shows). Energy had built up in anticipation of the music and for seeing the band in a small venue, and a few had that momentum going in a mosh pit. But bassist Ben Shepherd somehow found a way to rile up the audience even more. He mentioned the NY Rangers giving the crowd a reason to shout “Let’s Go Rangers” in unison. During the night, Soundgarden pushed the limits of the album, coming across bolder and more aggressive as they tackled the Superunknown (plus “Outshined” and “Rusty Cage”). Many of these are songs’ hooks became fixed in the general populous’s mind since their debut and it’s not surprise the biggest sing-alongs came with “Black Hole Sun” and “Fell on Black Days”. When Cornell suggested a future show might be a full play-through of their 2012 album King Animal, a strong effort from the reunited band, fans will surely be holding their breathe to hear these same Superunknown songs during the encore. No matter what the next show really is, it will be great to see what Soundgarden pull out of their hat this summer.

“Spoonman” on Fallon:

Let Me Drown
My Wave
Fell on Black Days
Head Down
Black Hole Sun
Limo Wreck
The Day I Tried to Live
Fresh Tendrils
4th of July
Like Suicide
Rusty Cage

Soundgarden / Nine Inch Nails co-headline Tour:
7/12 Quebec, QC, Canada Plains Of Abraham
7/13 Montreal. QC Canada Metropolis
7/18 Pemberton, BC Canada Pemberton Music Festival
7/19 Las Vegas, NV Axis at Planet Hollywood
7/21 Morrison, CO Red Rocks Amphitheatre
7/24 Tinley Park, IL First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
7/26 Clarkston, MI DTE Energy Music Theatre
7/27 Toronto, ON Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
7/29 Mansfield, MA XFINITY Center
7/30 Camden, NJ Susquehanna Bank Center
8/1 Wantagh, NY Nikon at Jones Beach Theatre
8/2 Holmdel, NJ PNC Bank Arts Center
8/4 Bristow, VA Jiffy Lube Live
8/5 Virginia Beach, VA Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach
8/7 Charlotte, NC PNC Music Pavilion
8/8 Atlanta, GA Aaron’s Amphitheater at Lakewood
8/10 West Palm Beach, FL Cruzan Amphitheatre
8/11 Tampa, FL MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre
8/14 Austin, TX Austin360 Amphitheater
8/16 Woodlands, TX Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
8/17 Dallas, TX Gexa Energy Pavilion
8/19 Albuquerque, NM Isleta Amphitheater
8/21 Chula Vista, CA Sleep Train Amphitheatre
8/22 Irvine, CA Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
8/24 Mountain View, CA Shoreline Amphitheatre
8/25 Hollywood, CA Hollywood Bowl
8/27 Wheatland, CA Sleep Train Amphitheatre
8/29 Ridgefield, WA Sleep Country Amphitheater
8/30 Auburn, WA White River Amphitheatre

Pearl Jam Fall 2014 Tour Dates:
10/1/2014 Cincinnati, OH US Bank Arena
10/3/2014 St Louis, MO Scottrade Center
10/3-5/2014 Austin, TX Austin City Limits Music Festival
10/8/2014 Tulsa, OK BOK Center
10/9/2014 Lincoln, NE Pinnacle Bank Arena
10/10-12/2014 Austin, TX Austin City Limits Music Festival
10/14/2014 Memphis, TN FedEx Forum
10/16/2014 Detroit, MI Joe Louis Arena
10/17/2014 Moline, IL iWireless Center
10/19/2014 St. Paul, MN Xcel Energy Center
10/20/2014 Milwaukee, WI BMO Harris Bradley Center
10/22/2014 Denver, CO Pepsi Arena

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