Pearl Jam - Yield
Epic Records
Hard Rock
13 songs (48:37)
Release year: 1998
Pearl Jam, Epic Records
Reviewed by Goat
Archive review

Yield was something of a comeback for Pearl Jam after their previous full length, the experimental No Code, didn’t do so well with fans. Returning to more of a straight-ahead Rock sound, the album debuted at number 2 on the Billboard 200, and set the style of albums from the band that has continued to this day. Listening again, over ten years after its release, Yield seems somewhat lacking, and whilst it has plenty of good songs, it’s not one of Pearl Jam’s best.

Opener Brain Of J is energetic and has a decent bit of soloing, a great opener all in all, but is followed by Faithful, again, with some excellent guitarwork, but Vedder’s vocals aren’t as good as on previous albums. Partly this can be blamed on the more relaxed sessions, and Vedder releasing creative control a little to allow the others to write more – Ament made his first lyrical contributions here. No Way touches on Hip-Hop with an interesting mixture of beats and guitar noodling, whilst first single Given To Fly remains one of the band’s best ballads, as uplifting as the title suggests.

Being fair to the band, even the poorer songs are experimental enough to be interesting; moments like the laid-back Wishlist are enhanced beyond measure by the psychedelic, almost Floydian guitar break and sampled ‘whooshing’ in the background. The quirky Pilate, the strange untitled track represented only by a red dot, the poppy yet almost Avant-Garde Push Me Push Me... all are proof of a band that hasn’t lost it yet, and standout songs like Do The Evolution make the album even better. That was a very odd song for the band, almost progressively rocking out with a wide array of influences making themselves known, based on the book Ishmael by Daniel Quinn. There’s even a choir break! It was also the first song from the band to have a music video made for it since 1992, the band hiring Spawn artist Todd McFarlane to create an animated piece which still impresses today.

Lowpoints? Well, MFC is far too short, and whilst Low Light isn’t a bad song, it is just a bit too repetitive. In Hiding, meanwhile, is one of those tracks that either speaks to you or doesn’t, and for me it does, a laid-back piece that leads wonderfully into the sunny avant-pop of Push Me Pull Me. All in all, of the Pearl Jam faithful few will love Yield and few will hate it... most, put it somewhere in the middle, and that’s where the album best sits, whether you consider it worthy of a slightly lower or, like me, higher rating.

Killing Songs :
Brain Of J, No Way, Given To Fly, Do The Evolution, In Hiding, Push Me Pull Me
Goat quoted 75 / 100
Adam quoted 72 / 100
Other albums by Pearl Jam that we have reviewed:
Pearl Jam - Backspacer reviewed by Goat and quoted 82 / 100
Pearl Jam - Live On Two Legs reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
Pearl Jam - Pearl Jam reviewed by Adam and quoted 88 / 100
Pearl Jam - Vitalogy reviewed by Adam and quoted 89 / 100
Pearl Jam - Vs reviewed by Goat and quoted 90 / 100
To see all 10 reviews click here
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