By Kim Dumo, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – American grunge-icon band Pearl Jam came to Rio on Sunday the 6th to promote their new album “Live On Legs.” They rocked a sold-out Praça da Apoteose, part of Sambódromo Marquês de Sapucaí, for 35,000 people, after selling out Morumbi Stadium in São Paulo on Friday and Saturday.
Pearl Jam has been labeled as the most influential American band of the 1990s and is known for their live shows. The band has been recognized with a number two position on Billboard, five American Music Awards, four MTV Video Music Awards and one Grammy Award.
The band was formed in Seattle, Washington in 1990 with members Eddie Vedder, Jeff Ament, Stone Gossard and Mike McCready. All four original members remain, with the addition of Matt Cameron on drums.
They were a key part of the early 90s American grunge movement that was led by Nirvana. Their talents and musicianship had them outlasting the grunge phase as they transitioned to an alternative sound.
On Sunday, the moon was out and the temperature was perfect for the adoring fans. Pearl Jam opened up with a fan favorite, “Unthought Known” from their 2009 album, “Back Spacer.”
They promptly followed up with their classics, “Evenflow” and “Daughter.” Concertgoer Aline Arruda said, “I was thrilled when they played ‘Black.’ I hope I don’t have to wait another six years to hear this song live again.”
Pearl Jam continued with another hit, “Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town,” and surprised the large crowd with a Ramones cover, “Blitzkrieg Bop.”
The audience responded with heavy enthusiasm, singing so loudly during some songs that the band was muffled. Eddie Vedder rewarded the crowd by leaving the chorus of “Better Man” to the 35,000 singing fans.
To show his appreciation, Vedder picked up a Brazilian t-shirt that had been thrown on stage and let it hang from his pocket for the rest of the show. In total, Pearl Jam played thirty songs for over two hours, including two encores. “An Amazing show, the same magic they had in 2005,” said attendee Eduardo Dutecnic.
Pearl Jam’s tour of South America is in celebration of their twentieth year of success. The anticipation was high since they hadn’t toured Brazil in six years, so a second show was added in São Paulo for Friday the 4th.
Those who missed the show can stay tuned for their reissue of “Vs” and “Vitology.” They also have a documentary that was directed by Cameron Crowe, the American film director, being released soon. Pearl Jam has left their second mark on South America, and the continent hopes they will return sooner than six years.