How do you keep things fresh if you’ve been at the top of the rock game for over 20 years? Well, if you’re Pearl Jam, you write a new song backstage, learn it on stage, and then perform it before an arena full of people.
That’s how PJ promise-keeper Eddie Vedder did it when playing Moline at The iWireless Center in Moline, Illinois on Friday, 17th October. Beginning the first of two encores, Vedder appeared on stage, sans band, to play the never-before-heard track.
After a quick aside about magic mushies, Vedder informed the Illinois crowd he wrote a new song just for the “Molinians” and that it was finished backstage, just before the band began their set. Reliable ol’ Ed then asks for a little patience as he quickly relearns the song, admitting to a little wine-induced fogginess.
Soon enough, though, Vedder had the song in-hand and, after a false start due to dim lighting making the lyrics unreadable, he was almost ready to go. Moline, Vedder said, follows a similar story to 1994 track Better Man, where a “woman’s in a relationship with a complete and utter asshole, prick, abuser, misogynist, motherfucker”.
Moline was one of two surprises from Pearl Jam that night. The band also performed their fourth studio album, 1996s No Code, in full. After opening with the set with Elderly Woman…, PJ played No Code opener Sometimes and continued through the entire LP in order, before playing other various hits.
WQAD reports it was only the second time Pearl Jam have played one of their albums live, in its entirety. As Rolling Stone point out, a comment left on Pearl Jam’s official message board claims PJ played their 2006 self-titled in full in Italy, that same year.
It’s also thought Pearl Jam may have a played an album in full a third time, back in 1991, but which record is unknown.
You can watch Vedder debut Moline below.
Watch: Pearl Jam debut Moline live at The iWireless Center
Watch: Pearl Jam – Hail, Hail
Watch: Pearl Jam – Smile
Watch: Pearl Jam – Present Tense
Setlist: (Via Consequence Of Sound)
Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town
Full performance of No Code
Who You Are
In My Tree
Off He Goes
Mankind (Tour debut)
I’m Open (Tour debut)
Around the Bend
Given to Fly
Interstellar Overdrive (Pink Floyd cover)
Mind Your Manners
Brain of J.
Moline (New Song)
Imagine (John Lennon cover)
Do the Evolution
Eruption (Van Halen cover)
Fuckin’ Up (Neil Young cover)