“Fell on Black Days” by Soundgarden
If there’s one thing most people know about Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell, it’s that he genuinely dealt with depression. And metaphorically, that is the mindstate which the titular “black days” represent.
More specifically, as illustrated by the first verse, the singer is overcome with a feeling of dread that appears to materialize out of nowhere. This is likely what is meant when he states that he is ‘falling’ into depression, as in it happening suddenly. Indeed as later detailed in the bridge, this whole state of being has caught him completely unawares. And the second verse shows that this mentality is contagious, as in now the singer is offending those whom he is close to.
Meanwhile the third verse is a bit more philosophical. It can be interpreted as the singer acknowledging that, in a way, he brought about this undesirable fate. And the way he did so is by not keeping it real with himself. Thus it’s only logical that in the next bridge, he is expressing his desire for a change. So this song is a bit more complex than how it may appear on the surface. It’s not simply the case of some dude feeling downhearted. Rather he has pondered on how he has been overtaken by such a mood. And in that regard, he knows he has his work cut out for him in terms of reclaiming his happiness.
Facts about “Fell on Black Days”
This song is from Soundgarden’s breakthrough album, Superunknown, which came out on 8 March 1994 via A&M Records. It was written by the late Chris Cornell (1964-2017) and produced by Soundgarden in conjunction with Michel Reinhorn.
There is also a demo version of this song which can be found on the 20th anniversary edition of Superunkown. Moreover, there is a “video version” which fans of this track are familiar with.
Jake Scott is the director of the music video to Fell on Black Days, which was filmed in Soundgarden’s hometown of Seattle.
Fell on Black Days proved to be a moderate hit, appearing on the UK Singles Chart as well as three different Billboard listings.