More than two years into the reunion, we still haven't seen the promised new Soundgarden album. Meanwhile, there have been tours, both Soundgarden as a whole and Chris Cornell solo. What's the hold-up?
I'd say it's because there just isn't any money in a new album. All of the big revenues have come (and will continue to come) from tours where Soundgarden plays their biggest hits. That's what people are paying to see. How many of them are going to buy a new album full on unfamiliar songs? I'd reckon not a lot--at least compared with the glory days of the 1990s.
So why bother at all? Two reasons.
(1) A new album gives Soundgarden another reason to tour. I'm going to guess that they made more money on the road in the last two years than they did the entire time they were together in the 80s and 90s. Yes, the crowds have been that big.
(2) It'll get them on modern rock radio a little more, keeping their profile as high as possible--so they can sell more concert tickets.
And case you haven't noticed, we're in the midst of a full-blown 90s revival era--nostalgia for the George H. Bush years, especially.
So a Soundgarden album is coming. Circle November 13th. There's no title yet, but it shouldn't be long.