Pumpkins not interested in smash hits

Never ones for understatement, Smashing Pumpkins have announced details of their latest ambitious epic release. The album Oceania will be released on June 18 as part of a 44 track "song cycle".

Lead Pumpkin Billy Corgan is famous for the intensity he brings to his work, and Oceania is no exception. He was determined that the work would not be influenced by commercial pressures. "I was dead set on making an album where every song was just as valuable as any other," he said, "ignoring the typical claptrap you hear about needing a single."

Rather than a collection of songs than can be cherry-picked by the download generation, Corgan wanted the album to work as a complete artefact. "The only way to make the case that every song on Oceania is worth hearing is to put your heart into the sequence as a cohesive whole. Once we felt we'd achieved that balance, only then did we let anyone outside our world hear the record we'd made."

He dismissed claims that the Smashing Pumpkins is now just Corgan and a collection of hired hands. "I've been adamant in stressing that, as a group, first and foremost, we are here to make new music together," he said. "Jeff, Mike, and Nicole have all made significant contributions to the tone and texture of Oceania, which is an album that is unlike any I've ever made. Yet at the same time, I believe it upholds the same musical values I've always pushed for with the Pumpkins, be they progressive, emotional, epic, or restless."

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