Soundgarden Guitarist Reveals Why One Of Band’s Hits Is ‘Commercial And Pedestrian’

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Soundgarden guitarist Kim Thayil discussed the Badmotorfinger era in a new Rolling Stone interview.

“I always think of how we shot two videos for ‘Outshined’ – I developed this understanding of the song as being commercial and pedestrian – and how it was in MTV’s Buzz Bin. I thought it was a great album but I characterized it by this MTV, commercial-radio thing and the attention and fawning that comes with that.”

He also said, “There was a definite sense of excitement because we had this new bass player [Ben Shepherd]. Everything was working creatively. There was a little bit of hesitation because we’d really built something over five or six years with Hiro [Yamamoto], and in between we played with [tour bassist] Jason Everman, but when Ben joined it was exciting. He’s one of my best friend’s little brothers, so I felt responsible for him. So it was excitement and eagerness but also a little trepidation because it was new.

And in the time after Hiro left, not only did Jason not work out, but our friend Andy Wood died. And this was a big deal. Chris [Cornell] lived with Andy. We rehearsed at the house that Chris and Andy lived in. I’d known Andy before Soundgarden existed, checking out [his band] Malfunkshun, and that was a big, heavy hit. And then Chris had gone off and started writing a bunch of songs about his close friend and roommate and these songs turned into Temple of the Dog. “