Chris Cornell’s Solo Discography, Ranked

Chris Cornell in a 2013 promo image. (The AU Review)

Chris Cornell in a 2009 promo image. (The AU Review)

A common misconception in the music world is a belief that an awesome piece of a band can do just as well on its own. There are exceptions — Peter Gabriel of Genesis and Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac are two that immediately come to mind — but more often than not most artists who pursue the solo route come up with only a fraction of the quality material they released with their bands.

Chris Cornell has been an example of the latter. I have made it no secret that I believe Soundgarden’s record output was the finest stretch of the nineties, bar none. After releasing Euphoria Morning in 1999, he joined the members of Rage Against the Machine to form Audioslave, and in spite of Tom Morello, they were actually pretty good. He released two albums after his departure from Audioslave in 2007 before rejoining Soundgarden in 2010.

You would think, as I would commonly rank the man who gave us striking vocal performances on “Jesus Christ Pose” and “Superunknown” as my favorite vocalist, that I would be excited with the announcement of his new solo album earlier this week. Unfortunately, his track record on his own hasn’t been very notable. With this announcement, I’m going to recap the four albums he has to his name that have since faded into obscurity, and rank them from worst to first. Read the rest of this entry »

“The Air Under the Dome” (Capitol Letters)

An empty stage prior to the Illinois House Inauguration. (Zach Bernard)

An empty stage at UIS prior to the Illinois House Inauguration. (Zach Bernard)

What an incredible week it has been.

Seriously. This was the plan all along. One year ago today, I was planning on how to tell my parents I wanted to attend grad school. Deb from WZND had told me I should look into the PAR program at University of Illinois at Springfield, further affirmed by Laura from TV-10, now it was a matter of saying, “Hey guys, I want another year of school.” Even though I was willing to take on the financial burden, this certainly did come out of the blue.

It quickly became “Plan A.” I was graduating in May as a broadcast journalism major with a minor in political science. I had a lot to learn about state-level politics outside of the basics, but over the past few years it had become somewhat of a niche. From that point forward I dreamt of going to the Statehouse every day as a professional reporter with a news bureau covering the inner workings of Illinois government. And in an election year, quite possibly covering a big transition.

Fast forward to one year later, and here we are. It came true. Read the rest of this entry »