“A Song for a Son,” the first single off the revamped Smashing Pumpkins’ massive 44-song project Teargarden by Kaleidyscope, premiered today at Spinner. We knew Billy Corgan was exploring his psychedelic rock roots in recent months while performing for with the Spirits in the Sky, but nothing in Corgan’s prolific recording history could have prepared us for the over five minutes of classic rock that is “A Song for a Son,” which starts off with a “Stairway to Heaven”-esque riff before exploding into the rest of ZoSo‘s touchstones. The track also marks the official studio debut of new drummer Mike Byrne.
Tomorrow the track will arrive as a free download over at the Smashing Pumpkins’ official Website. As Rolling Stone reported in September, Corgan revealed plans to release Teargarden as a long series of free downloads. “My desire is to release a song at a timeâ€¦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 said. “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.”
“‘A Song For A Son’ just seemed like it had the right epic quality to it that says, ‘OK, here we go on this massive journey!” It sounds like the beginning of something more,” Corgan said of the first single, which the band had previously performed live. “The version of the song from the 20th Anniversary tour was pretty basic, and I felt at the time that we didn’t really find the heart of the song. However, the song was connecting to the audience emotionally so I knew something exciting was in there to be discovered. The recorded version is produced more like a movie, where it takes you to different places, from intimate to psychedelic to whimsical.”
The songs will then be divided into 11 limited-edition four-song EPs that fans can purchase, plus a box set that’ll house Corgan’s entire Kaleidyscop-ic vision. Corgan promises fans that the EPs will differ in some way from the boxed set, so fans that invest in the limited-edition four-track EPs don’t get burned. If “A Song for a Son” is any indication of what we can expect from Teargarden, each EP will likely be the length of Exile on Main Street. Now that the ball is rolling, to quote Corgan, the next song from the album will be “coming shortly,” so keep an eye on the Pumpkins’ official site these next few weeks. Corgan also announced in a statement that a world tour in support of this epic new project will begin in spring 2010.
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