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Screaming Trees – Dust (1996)

July 6, 2019

Untitled presentation (27)

July Series: Why I’m (still) a “total man of the ’90s”

1. I miss what I never had


[Album 647/1001]

“They say you can’t miss something you’ve never had
So tell me why, Why I could feel so bad”
– Gin Blossoms, Cajun Song

The Gin Blossoms may have a point.

I never owned Dust.

Before this year, I wouldn’t have been able to name any of the songs.

And yet, I miss Screaming Trees.


Dust is one of those albums where everything reminds me of something, yet nothing feels like (to borrow a BNL tune) it’s all been done.

The opener Halo of Ashes? Somewhere between Our Lady Peace’s Birdman & Starseed.

Look At You? Gently evokes Pavement’s Here.

Dying Days? Opens like Cracker, drifts into Alice In Chains territory, ends in a Pearl Jam manner. I later learned Mike McCready plays a solo on the track, perhaps that explains it!

But such reference points do not detract from the listening experience; instead, they remind me of why I’m so fond of the decade.Screaming_Trees-Dust_(album_cover)

And though I wasn’t aware of them at the time, due to its instant familiarity & general right-up-my-street-ness, Dust is starting to feel like an album from my personal teenage years.

I haven’t quite got to the point of revising my personal history (convincing myself that I was always a fan / fabricating memories of listening to Screaming Trees / reminiscing about those non-existent times)…but I could see how that might start to happen someday.

That tends to happen when people miss things.

Even the things they never had.


Verbalize the Positive

My wonderful wife & I went to see the new Spiderman yesterday – fun!

From → 1990s

  1. Wonderful choice. I once waxed lyrical about the perfect nature of this very album on the BBC. I adore Screaming Trees. Although I was introduced to them by a pretty girl with long dark hair back in the Sweet Oblivion era it’s Dust that is their crowning glory. Saw them live on the tour for it too. In Wolverhampton no less. It was glorious even if the rest of the night after the show resulted in a break up with a girlfriend and a journey home to Suffolk starting at 3am in a shit down train station.

    • It’s an album about which lyrical ought to be waxed! New-to-me, but really doesn’t feel that way. And I’m pleased the show was glorious, even if the remainder of the evening wasn’t quite so glorious!

  2. They should read ‘shut down’ but it still works

  3. Lanegan has some really cool solo stuff too – I’m more interested in that than Screaming Trees most of the time.

    • And I know the name (and that our blogging friend J is a big fan) but little else about him – will be interested to explore more!

  4. Unknown territory for me, I’m afraid. but any band that comes with a pretty girl with long dark hair has to be good.

  5. A top 15 LP for me, for sure. It can be sacrilege to say it but this is 10x better than ‘Sweet Oblivion’ for me.

    • And I haven’t explored Sweet Oblivion – so I am not offended! I could see this making its way up my top LPs list, so solid top to bottom

  6. Really pleased you dig this one – it’s an all timer for me. Top 10. Top 5. Top 3. Depends on the day, really. Ask me tomorrow and I might just say it’s my favourite of ever ever.

    I’ve been drafting a post about this one for years. It’s impossible for me to write about.

    It’s Screaming Trees’ finest moment. In fact, I’ll go on record and say it’s the Seattle scene’s finest moment. A damn fine record (I’m away to listen to it now).

    • It was a group I knew next to nothing about – but when I saw Mr. Lanegan was in the group, I had a feeling you might approve of their work!

      I often wonder if I can be as enthusiastic about albums that I didn’t love as a teen (as it’s tough to compete with that) but I think such strong records like Dust have a chance, even though they’re new-to-me at age 37.

      Enjoy the revisit!

      • I don’t think they have a bad record, so there’s plenty more for you to dig, I think.

        And I think you can be just as enthusiastic about albums you discover now as those you did when you were a teen. I’m mad about ZZ Top and Roth-era Van Halen (among others), and I discovered them when I was in my 30’s.

      • That’s encouraging to hear – I feared nothing would be able to compete with the groups I adored at 17. There’s hope!

      • Aye, don’t you worry… there’s plenty of enthusiasm to go ’round!

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Guided By Voices – Alien Lanes (1995) | 1001albumsin10years
  2. The Boo Radleys – Giant Steps (1993) | 1001albumsin10years
  3. Nitin Sawhney – Beyond Skin (1999) | 1001albumsin10years
  4. Ash – 1977 (1996) | 1001albumsin10years
  5. GZA – Liquid Swords (1995) | 1001albumsin10years
  6. Robert Wyatt – Shleep (1997) | 1001albumsin10years
  7. Ride – Nowhere (1990) | 1001albumsin10years
  8. 300 albums in 2 years! | 1001albumsin10years
  9. 1996 | 1001albumsin10years

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