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4.6 out of 5 stars526
4.6 out of 5 stars
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 18, 2004
Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness is the greatest combination of musical genius ever created. I feel that Billy Corgan achieved Musical Immortality with the earth shattering collection that is these two CDs. A huge collection of all types of rock, so no matter what your flavor, you will find it all in this stunning variety. It's the only album I have ever listened to that I have thoroughly enjoyed each and every one of the songs. Galapogos, Tonight, Tonight, Bullet With Butterfly Wings, Stumbleine, and Zero rank among my all time favorite songs. I completely recommend the collection of B-Sides from this album found in the "Aeroplane Flies High" box set. If you have never heard of the Smashing Pumpkins (Shame, if you haven't) or simply have never picked up this album, do now, as you will enjoy it till the end of time. It's just too bad the greatest band ever formed is no longer around, but their music will live on forever
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 17, 2008
"Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness" is an incredible work from the American alternative band The Smashing Pumpkins. Released on October 24th of 1995, the double CD (triple album) features some incredibly diverse styles and more input from D'arcy Wretzky and James Iha, though certainly Billy Corgan is still the dominant creative member of the band.

The album is not afraid to take some chances. It opens with an instrumental, which is relatively soft. There is tremendous diversity, as the sound can go from acoustic to very heavy and vice-versa from one song to the next. The majority of the album is made up of relatively short pieces of less than five minutes, but there are a few longer pieces mixed in with the 28 tracks. The shorter pieces tend to stick to one type of sound, while a couple of the longer pieces are more diverse within themselves.

The opening instrumental leads into the excellent "Tonight, Tonight", but the softer and more orchestrated sound doesn't sound last as it then turns much heavier with tracks like "Jellybelly", and "Zero", and the first single "Bullet With Butterfly Wings". The contrast in sounds goes back and forth, between the heavy and the light until eventually the group delivers a longer piece itself filled with contrast in "Porcelina of the Vast Oceans", which is then followed with the first half closer "Take Me Down". The album is a concept album of sorts, dealing with the very simple realities of life and death.

The second CD is more of the same, which is to say more diversity of sound and more changes and surprises. The transition from "1979" to "Tales of a Scorched Earth" is a great example of moving from one type of sound to almost its polar opposite from track to track. Not that every track change is so dramatic, but their changes help to keep things fresh and interesting. There also is a rather unusual use of tunings as well as instruments. Overall, this is an album which one needs to listen to many times, and one which the listener will hear something new each time. With its incredible diversity, there may be pieces which you don't like on this album, but for myself I found that they were all at least intriguing. From the titles mentioned before, to the delightfully odd "We Only Come Out at Night" and the stalker song done as a simple love song "Lilly (My One and Only)", this is a great album to experience over and over.

The Smashing Pumpkins are Billy Corgan (lead vocal, guitar, piano), James Iha (guitar, vocals), D'arcy Wretzky (bass, vocals), and Jimmy Chamberlin (drums, vocals). Guest artists include the Chicago Symphony Orchestra ("Tonight, Tonight"), and Greg Leisz (pedal and lap steel guitar on "Take Me Down")
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on July 28, 2013
Other people have been reporting that there are distortion issues with "Zero" and other parts of the LPs, but everything plays perfectly fine for me. This is truly a great reissue. The included book containing the memoirs of the album is a very nice touch. Personally, I would have prefered if they kept the original cover since it's such an iconic album cover from the 90s, but the original cover image is on the included book so it's certainly not missing. The LPs are quite hefty, i'm assuming 200g, and the box itself is quite sturdy and heavy, which I actually use as a bookend for my other vinyl records.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 29, 2013
I was apprehensive about buying this boxset because I had read so many negative reviews about it's audio quality (I think Zero was supposed to sound pretty distorted and I want to say that I read something about records being pressed off center). The copy that I received didn't have either of these issues. It sounds great. The album art and included booklets are really interesting. There are notes on each song written by Billy that shed light on the band and the writing and recording processes. Definitely a worthwhile purchase if you're a Smashing Pumpkins fan.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 1, 2013
I already knew I loved the album of course, but I was not expecting this item to be so impressive as far as production and packaging goes. It's a great deal for what you get!! A really beautiful presentation of the album, with two booklets included, one with the lyrics and everything, and one with a history of the band/album. A really well put together album (really a box-set!).
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on July 8, 2015
Back when this album first came out many people didn't understand it... We were mostly at the end of the grunge era and pop was taking over the music industry... But what is amazing about this album is that in a whirlwind of cheap pop stars on the rise and mostly dying rock bands it managed to rise from the underdark of no more place for alt rock on mainstream radios and make its way to the top still and this is what makes an album a true masterpiece Billy Corgan did an amazing work on this album and once again with this remaster he does it again! The presentation is sublime all of the discs gatefold have pictures on one side and the tracklist on the other... It also includes a pictures and liner notes (for every single song i might add) book which is simply amazing and in my opinion one of the highlight is the actual lyrics book from the cd release but in blown up format that alone is worth the price haha :) but the tracks have all been remastered and well it's on vinyl so of course it sound amazing! If you are hesitating don't anymore and go buy this masterpiece! Cheers
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on July 11, 2004
"Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness" by the Smashing Pumpkins was easily the biggest (in every sense of the word) album to hit in the post-grunge alternative rock heyday that was my adolescence. In fact, I would say that this was the early peak of the movement - a seemingly bloated double album by a band that had a slew of hits off their major label debut just a few years earlier. Soon enough, everyone had a "Zero" shirt and listened to this album day and night, or at least the half-dozen or so singles that were played on modern rock radio.
The best thing I can say about this release is that I have no problem sitting down and listening to the whole thing (that's two hours, kids), even 9 years after its initial release. And it's solid. The whole double-disc affair holds up well for those entire two hours. The reason that it doesn't get the coveted five-star rating is that the bulk of the songs are good, with a few occassional forays into "great." Fortunately, there are no duds on this album. "Muzzle," "Tales of a Scorched Earth," "1979," "X.Y.U.," and "An Ode to No One" are the cream of the crop, but like I said, the rest of the album deserves repeated listenings.
Anyone that grew up around this time and listened to alternative rock either owned this at one point, knew someone that did, or still does own it. It really is an essential release for its time and place, and it holds up very well into the 21st century.
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on June 22, 2004
Ok, so I am not pretending to have listened to them since they first started out in whomever's garage, and so on like so many "fans" I have talked to. I am a big Smashing Pumpkins fan, and that is through listening to their music as it comes, and on my own terms. Sorry, but I am not a fan to brag that I knew something before anyone else. In fact, I was never a huge fan until this cd came out. Siamese Dream was played minimally, and the others the same. The more and more I listened to MCIS however, the more I couldn't go in between sessions of listening. This caused me to go back, and reevaluate my previous thoughts on their other cd's. That is a sign of greatness, being able to change people's views on accomplishments already made by new great achievments. These cd's have songs for any kind of mood you could ever be in, and then some. From Porcelina (my favorite song) to Tonight, Tonight, to 1979, every song on this cd deserves to be listened to over and over again. I am a fan of music, and based on the thousands of dollars I have spent on hundreds of cd's, I can safely say this is the best investment ever (never been a big fan of burning cd's). Personally, right below the Pumpkins are Sevendust and Spice 1 (funny how they are all S's), so diversity is not an area where I am lacking I believe. Take it for what you will, but for someone who loves music, and drags 600 cd's to work with me everyday, I could not live without this pair. They are essential, beyond any other single cd or set I own. I know you will think the same when you listen.
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on May 8, 2004
'Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness' was probably the most influential double album of the 90s, and arguably moreso than Pink Floyd's Wall album or the Beatles' White album (neither those artists greatest). And although I prefer NIN's Fragile album, this is more diverse and eclectic.
I was first exposed to the entire album nearly three years ago, and I kept listening because every track stood out so much to me.
The band's first two studio albums, Gish and Siamese Dream showed the band's ability to have many midtempos and a solid mix of soft and more rocky songs on their discs. On this album, there are several hits, yet it's also an album needed to be heard with an open ear, but surpringly, many people have caught up to opening their minds on this one. And even though Billy isn't the greatest singer to everyone, I like his vocals because they never fail to show the emotion intended in the albums.
The singles aged well, also. "Tonight Tonight" has some of Billy's best lyrics ever, and is a good way to build an album up from an awesome piano instrumental. It's got many strong things in it. As well as the fact that "Zero" has the craziest guitar solo ever, even though I don't care as much for the lyrics admittedly. As well as the fact that "Bullet With Butterfly Wings" is instantly catchy and everyone knows the chorus. "Thirty Three" kind of reminds me of "Disarm", but it's distinct enough from that one to where it stands out on its own, and I still love it. As well as the fact that it has their biggest hit ever, "1979", with a bit of a new wave influence, as that one also had well-done lyrics and some memorable bass from D'arcy. One thing I remember about the time when I was 8/9 years old and this album came out was the music videos, all which were experiences. MTV actually played music videos then, and Smashing Pumpkins vids for that matter.
The band's electronic side even slightly comes in on this album. That's how much it's got in it. Songs like "Love" and "We Only Come Out At Night" have elements of that, although the latter is more of its own style.
Some songs, I feel, are as long as they should have been. "Thru The Eyes of Ruby" is just amazing, so that song's placement is very valid. "X.Y.U." is just explosive, one of the album's heaviest, with an amazing guitar solo, and some of Corgan's most memorable yells in music.
As well as the fact that there are other ways to describe tracks unlisted. There is cool guitar on "Farewell and Goodnight" that stands out,
Jimmy Chamberlain's drum talent still shines through, whether it be the memorable cymbals of "Lily" or in many other tracks on the album. I was shocked that I liked the follow-up album which lacked his drumming.
So all in all, this album has almost everything. Music has influences that range from heavy rock to even classical and jazz influences, as shown in the title track.
This was their most diverse album ever made, so if you look in that for an album, pick this up first from the band. However, I prefer 'Adore' and 'Siamese Dream' to this, but it's still excellent, and that's not by much that I prefer the two. I wonder how you wouldn't own this in the first place, but it's a double album, so I guess that's why. So I guess, if you see it used and have the money for a full album and wouldn't be willing to spend 25 dollars, buy this used.
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on May 2, 2004
Not many albums leave me with as many conflicting emotions as this one. I love a great deal of the songs on "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness", but I can't stand a good number as well. However, the feeling I have when I have completed the album is like no other. I always feel like I have just taken a magnificant and long journey.
Overall, I like the melodic songs better than the hard rockers, but there are a few exceptions. My favorite soft songs include "Tonight, Tonight", "Cupid de Locke", "Porcelina of the Vast Oceans", "Take Me Down", "1979", "Thru the Eys of Ruby", "We Only Come Out at Night" and "Lily (My One and Only)". I do also like many of the rockers, including "Zero", "Bullet with Butterfly Wings", "Muzzle", and "XYU".
However, my least favorite song of all time is the awful "Tales of a Scorched Earth". When I listened to it (I skip it now) I used to think, I thought the Smashing Pumpkins were an ALTERNATIVE band. When did they decide to try to be hard core metal? The song does not work.
That misstep aside, "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness" is a gem of an album, a breathtaking musical experience and an amazing double album. Buy it. You won't be disappointed.
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