Billy Corgan may tumble into the diminishing vortex of his own album concept

The Smashing Pumpkins.

Back. Still weird.

Since the insane success of Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness ('95) Billy Corgan has been firing, ranting, wrestling, hiding, re-hiring and making lots of oddly non-rocking music.

I know a lot of people whose youthful obsession with this band (and online handle) has lasted into adulthood, but even if you do include Adore and the Machina albums, the well they draw from is surprisingly shallow considering how long he's been active.

Call it the Jimmy Chamberlin Effect. The Pumpkins briefly re-rocked for about a second back in 2007 with the release of Zeitgeist... Until Corgan realized he gets along with drum machines better than an actual drummer.

Lately, as per the AVClub (The Onion's more serious sister site which you should read, too), Corgan has been releasing a 44-song concept record called Teargarden By Kaleidyscope song-by-song for free on the internet. And now he is apparently pausing in the middle to re-sign with EMI and drop an album-within-the-album called Oceania.

To celebrate, we are treated to the 12-minute title track -- an epic within an album spawned from another album.

(Follow the link through Billy's rabbit hole... (Sorry, that sounded a little weirder than intended.))

It's not a bad track -- the solos and Corgan's whispering wail are much like you'd expect in a Pumpkins tune. Except that this one weaves around, dropping the pace, laying some keys, chugging back up with guitars, deciding which way to go... In fact it's almost like... a bunch of songs within the song.

For his next act Corgan may just start naming his guitar solos: "Little Phishies: Swimming around in the key of 'A' during Oceania".

When Corgan makes friends, stuff like Zwan happens. But when he sits at home alone lately... I dunno. I'm not sure I'd wanna peek through that window.

The man did write and record Siamese Dream ('93) entirely by himself. But sometimes outside ideas don't hurt.

Aww, who am I kidding?

Billy -- you helped make growing up in the '90s awesome. And with just five words ("The world is a vampire..")!

Ride Mellon Collie.. as long as you like. Keep doing weird stuff.

I still get to say I once went to a dance at the high school you attended.

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  • The first few EP's for this 44 song album were actually pretty cool, but it's just getting carried away now.

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