Five years after the Smashing Pumpkins' demise, former frontman Billy Corgan finally makes his solo debut this week with the Martha's Music/Reprise set "TheFutureEmbrace." While the lyrics are more introspective and the music more electronic than what we've come to expect from the Pumpkins or his most recent project, Zwan, Corgan's distinctive vocals and grungy guitar riffs are ubiquitous.
The mostly upbeat songs, highlighted by "All Things Change," "Mina Loy (M.O.H.)" and "A100" effortlessly flow together. Guests include ex-Pumpkins drummer Jimmy Chamberlin on "DIA" and the Cure's Robert Smith, who provides backing vocals on an ethereal rendition of the Bee Gees' "To Love Somebody." Lead single "Walking Shade," which most resembles the Pumpkins' late-period sound, should help Corgan receive a warm welcome on the charts.
"Many people assume when I do more progressive work that I am trying to move away from something, when honestly what I am trying to do is get closer to who I really am," Corgan says. "I tried to sum up all my feelings about my life and the world around me in the most beautiful ways I could dream up. It is easy to be negative, and much harder to find that silver lining behind the clouds of modern society."
Corgan begins a North American tour June 22 in Atlanta.