30 Years Ago, Soundgarden Releases 'Louder Than Love'

September 5, 2019

On September 5th, 1989, Soundgarden made their debut after signing with A&M Records with their second studio album Louder Than Love.

Given some of the crude choice of words in songs like "Big Dumb Sex", Louder Than Love was given a Parental Advisory sticker on the album's packaging. However, it did not prevent the album from making its debut on the Billboard 200, topping out at No. 108.

Following tours through North America and Europe in support of the album, Louder Than Love was Soundgarden's final record with their original bassist Hiro Yamamoto.

Cornell found himself writing seven of the twelve tracks on the album, stating that Hiro kept himself away from the band and there was not much of a "free-flowing system" of musical ideas between himself and his bandmates. So he channelled a lot of anger, frustration and angst into the songs, which turned out to be a very positive experience for himself and the rest of Soundgarden.

During the recording process, Soundgarden were intent on avoiding typical 80's production techniques similar to Def Leppard and lean more towards of a contemporary version of '70s rock. The final product resulted in something that was heavy, dirty and raw, yet not metal like popular acts like Metallica, Megadeth and Anthrax. But the band later admitted that as proud as they were of the record, they still found Louder Than Love to still sound too clean and produced for their tastes.