Billy Corgan took to Smashing Pumpkins' official Website today to reveal that the barely recognizable band has begun work on a massive new 44-song album called Teargarden by Kaleidyscope. You'd figure it'd be a while between now and when you'll hear the fruits of the Pumpkins' labors, but Corgan also revealed on an innovative release plan that'll allow fans to freely download the songs as the band finishes them.
"My desire is to release a song at a time beginning around Halloween of this year, with each new release coming shortly after until all 44 are out. Each song will be made available absolutely for free, to anyone anywhere. There will be no strings attached," Corgan writes. "Free will mean free, which means you won't have to sign up for anything, give an email address, or jump through a hoop. You will be able to go and take the song or songs as you wish, as many times as you wish."
We know Corgan isn't the most conventional rocker, but to release an entire album of 44 songs for free? That's extreme. However, Corgan knows his audience, and he knows that there are thousands of fans eager to purchase one or all eleven of the limited-edition four song EPs he plans to carve out of Teargarden by Kaleidyscope. When the album is completely finished, all 44 songs will be packed into a single Kaleidyscope box set. For those plotting to skip the EP process and wait for the complete set, Corgan foils that plan by writing "the box set will not be a recompilation of the limited edition pieces."
With an album called Teargarden by Kaleidyscope, an instant entry into our Raditude-inspired list of Dictionary-Defying Album Titles, you'd expect Corgan to have an interesting tale to back the title, and Billy doesn't disappoint. "The story of the album is based on 'The Fool's Journey', as signified in the progress of the Tarot," Corgan writes. "It is my intention to approach this by breaking down the journey of our life here into four phases as made by these different characters; the Child, the Fool, the Skeptic, and the Mystic." So essentially he's making a Hawkwind album, or an LP that "harkens back to the original psychedelic roots of The Smashing Pumpkins: atmospheric, melodic, heavy, and pretty."
As Rolling Stone previously reported, Teargarden will be the first SP LP to feature new teenage drummer Mike Byrne, who auditioned for and ultimately won the position of Pumpkins' drummer after the exodus of Jimmy Chamberlin. Ironically enough, Chamberlin left the Pumpkins after being unable to "cash the check," and by releasing an album for free, Corgan might not have a check to cash.
• Smashing Pumpkins' Drummer Announced, Corgan Hints At Album
• Corgan Explains Why He's Keeping Smashing Pumpkins Name
• Jimmy Chamberlin Explains Smashing Pumpkins Split, Says He Can't "Cash The Check"