Smash­ing Pump­kins

Total Guitar - - CONTENTS - Words Joe Bosso

Orig­i­nal Smash­ing Pump­kins Billy Cor­gan and James Iha are back to­gether on the road play­ing their class ic so ngs plus new ma­te­rial. Ahead of their UK come­back gig, Co rgan and Iha — plus more re­cent ad­di­tion Jeff Sc hroeder — talk re­unit­ing, record­ing and de­ploy­ing their new three-gui­tar at­tack…

Although the con­cept of a Smash­ing Pump­kins ‘re­union’ still feels new for the rest of us right now, for Billy Cor­gan, the idea of putting the al­trock ti­tans back to­gether orig­i­nates in 2005, when, fol­low­ing the breakup of his postPump­kins band Zwan, he took out full-page ads in chicago news­pa­pers and made his case:“i have made plans to re­new and re­vive the Smash­ing Pump­kins,” he wrote. “I want my band back and my songs and my dreams.” It didn’t ex­actly pan out as he’d hoped, as only long­time drum­mer Jimmy Cham­ber­lin signed on – and then he left and re­turned again. Over the years, sev­eral other mem­bers came and went, although c or­gan did find a trusty col­lab­o­ra­tor and axe co­hort in Jeff Schroeder, who has been a con­stant in the group since 2007. In the back of his mind, how­ever, there al­ways seemed to be un­fin­ished busi­ness with Iha, whom he hadn’t spo­ken with in years.

As it turned out, Iha felt the same way. Since leav­ing the Pump­kins, he’d kept busy with var­i­ous projects (pro­duc­ing, a solo al­bum, film scores), and he’d found a sec­ond home as a semireg­u­lar mem­ber of A Per­fect Cir­cle. But one day in 2015 he de­cided to call Cor­gan to see if they could hash things out over din­ner and make sense of their past.

Pho­tog­ra­phy Jen Rosen­stein

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