Monument to a smashing band

Sophie Prettyman, Staff Writer

Critically acclaimed alternative rock band Smashing Pumpkins released a new album called Monuments to an Elegy on Dec. 5, 2014. The band was formed in 1988 and received high praise in the 1990s, but broke up in 2000. However, they reunited in 2006 to continue making music. This is the band’s ninth studio album.


Monuments to and Elegy is the fourth album of the Smashing Pumpkin’s Teargarden by Kaleidyscope, a collective 44-song concept album project which started in 2009 with the EP Vol. 1: Songs for a Sailor. At under 33 minutes long and made up of nine songs total, this is their shortest album yet.


This latest installment continues with the band’s tradition of epic rock music, but veers away from their famous ‘90s alt-rock sound at the same time. Although the music is driven by soaring guitars, it also has a more electronic sound. Songs like “Monuments” and “Dorian” are infused with synthesizers, which shows a more modern alternative sound and reveals the Smashing Pumpkins’ wishes of returning to the mainstream. The song “Anaise!” has more of a funky sound, while the opening track “Tiberius” and the closing track “Anti-Hero” are reminiscent of their rock roots. On Monuments, lead singer Billy Corgan sings about topics such as life, love, and the end of relationships. In “Tiberius,” Corgan sings poetic lyrics like “What is love if love obeys/Let flee doves in flight/Make me stray from my light/Never leave here softly” while drums pound and guitars tastefully blast.


Teargarden by Kaleidyscope will be completed later this year with the release of Day for Night, the last installment for the long-term concept album. Smashing Pumpkins hopes to release a box set including all the music from this project once it is completely released accompanied by an art movie directly related to the album.