10 Best Smashing Pumpkins Songs

The 10 best Smashing Pumpkins songs unsurprisingly draw heavily from the earlier albums in their career, before Billy Corgan was the only original member. The best Pumpkins songs are not necessarily the biggest hits. Here are 10 of the best Smashing Pumpkins songs that don’t include the cliché, overplayed hits.

  1. “Rhinoceros”-"Gish." The clean tones and octave based guitar riffs on “Rhinoceros” set the stage for the sounds that would make Smashing Pumpkins a rock monster. "Gish" is their first effort, and it quickly solidified them in the alternative college music scene.

  2. “Cherub Rock”-"Siamese Dream." From the unmistakable opening snare roll to the monster guitar solo, “Cherub Rock” stands as the opener to one of the greatest rock albums ever to come out of the alternative movement. Not only one of best Smashing Pumpkins songs, but one of the best alternative songs of all time.

  3. “Soma”-"Siamese Dream." This seven-minute teen anthem is one of the lesser known Smashing Pumpkins songs, but a favorite among diehard fans. Every jaded teenager in America can relate to the lyrics: “I’m all by myself/As I’ve always felt.”

  4. "Plume"-"Pisces Iscariot." This song comes from the collection of "Siamese Dream" B-sides and rarities, known as "Pisces Iscariot." "Plume" is classic Smashing Pumpkins all the way, with heavy crunch and blaring guitar solos. It may just be the best Smashing Pumpkins song you've never heard.

  5. “Jelly Belly”-"Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness." This song makes the list of best Smashing Pumpkins songs with its mix of heavy, distorted guitars and a catchy chorus. This is classic Smashing Pumpkins rock and roll.

  6. “Muzzle”-"Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness." Billy Corgan knows how to write lyrics that resonate with the most angst-ridden population in the U.S.A.: teenagers. With lines like, “I fear that I am ordinary/just like everyone,” this song is one of the standouts on the first disc of "Mellon Collie."

  7. “Bodies”-"Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness." This is as close to heavy metal as Smashing Pumpkins has ever been, and it is certainly heavy.  Yet within the overbearing guitars and desolate lyrics, Billy Corgan still offers a hook for listeners. Easily one of the best Smashing Pumpkins songs of all time.

  8. “Thru the Eyes of Ruby”-"Mellon Collie and the infinite Sadness." As epic a rock song as has ever existed, Corgan and guitarist James Iha really get to showcase their affinity for searing, driving lead guitar on this song. “Thru the Eyes of Ruby” is one of the best Smashing Pumpkins songs, and goes toe to toe with the greatest rock epics in history.

  9. "Annie-Dog"-"Adore." "Adore" marked a decided downturn in the Smashing Pumpkins quality of music. But there were a few standout songs. "Annie-Dog" is a stark departure from previous Pumpkins material, with its sparse instrumentation. 

  10. “Stand Inside Your Love”-"Machina."  By the time this single came out, Billy Corgan had become a full-fledged vampire. And this goth-retro inspired tune reflects that.   It’s by far the best track on "Machina" and showed that Corgan and friends still had creative vigor. It just squeezes in as one of the best Smashing Pumpkins songs of all time.

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