Dance Of The Clairvoyants

Songfacts®:

  • In "Dance Of The Clairvoyants," Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder accepts the certainty of uncertainty in a world that seems more chaotic than ever:

    Expecting perfection
    Leaves a lot to ignore
    When the past is the present
    And the future's no more


    Pearl Jam has never been a band to let injustice go by the boards (these are the guys who took on TicketMaster), but there's only so much you can do, especially when your opponents have all the political power. In surrendering to imperfection, we could become stronger and gain more clarity.
  • A clairvoyant is someone who can see into the future, which is impossible without superpowers. Eddie Vedder could be making the point that none of us know for sure what's going to happen, so we have to accept a certain level of uncertainty.
  • Pearl Jam left no trace of their groundbreaking grunge sound on this one. The song has an electronic dance feel with atmospheric synths and heavily processed drums. Eddie Vedder adopts a post-punk snarl that increases in intensity as each verse progresses. He sound a lot like David Byrne of Talking Heads on the track.
  • This is Pearl Jam's first new song since their 2018 standalone single "Can't Deny Me." It's the lead single from their album Gigaton, their first since Lightning Bolt in 2013.
  • Guitarist Stone Gossard takes on Jeff Ament's bass duties during the track while Ament contributes guitar and twinkling synths. Ament said the song "was a perfect storm of experimentation and real collaboration, mixing up the instrumentation and building a great song, and Ed writing some of my favorite words yet, around Matt's killer drum pattern."
  • The band wrote the song as a group collaboration and co-produced the track with Josh Evans, a sound technician from Seattle. Evans was a guitar technician on the Lightning Bolt recordings and produced the 2018 track "Can't Deny Me."
  • The first video, named "Mach I," was made by Evolve Studios with Joel Edwards producing. Typical of Pearl Jam, the band doesn't appear in it. Footage of nature and space is used instead, giving us a sense of our place in the universe.

    The band later released a second video dubbed "Mach II," which showed footage of the band performing the song, spliced with imagery from the first clip.

    A third and final video titled "Mach III," combines footage from the first two, while including more shots of the group performing underneath a lightning-filled sky. Pearl Jam noted on Twitter that "Mach III" represents their first official video in 7 years."
  • A Brazilian group called Black Circle posted an impressive cover of this song just days after it was released.
  • Pearl Jam gave the song's inaugural live performance during June 24, 2020's All In WA virtual COVID-19 benefit concert. It also marked the first time that the band had played any Gigaton track live.

    Each group member played out of their respective homes, with Eddie Vedder waving a lighter as his daughters and wife Jill Vedder made a cameo in the background. They were also bolstered by former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist Josh Klinghoffer, who was supposed to join the band on their canceled spring 2020 tour.

Comments: 2

  • Cdthomas1981 On 10c from Milwaukee, WiI think this is what the guys are going for, I got this from Wikipedia when searching for Clairvoyant:

    "According to scientific research, clairvoyance is generally explained as the result of confirmation bias, expectancy bias, fraud, hallucination, self-delusion, sensory leakage, subjective validation, wishful thinking or failures to appreciate the base rate of chance occurrences and not as a paranormal power."

    A lot of the Conservative view is non-scientific and perceptibly the logic is not based on facts, but only perception itself. Instead of living in an America that uses facts to decide the direction of this country and the world as well, we just live in constant denial.
  • Buddy C. from North Carolina Absolutely positively brilliant. Certainly the uncertainty and nothing less than the unexpected. Was floored when I heard this because it was like wow who are these guys this is a new band right. Wrong this is an evolving band that is truly dedicated to getting better all the time and fearlessly treading waters that most artists and bands would steer clear of. Nothing wrong with leaving one's comfort zone if you're willing to put forth the time, dedication, and hard work to put out quality material. That's what Pearl Jam just did with Dance Of The Clairvoyants. Great song.
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