From SPCodex, The Smashing Pumpkins wiki
Promotional single by The Smashing Pumpkins
ReleasedSeptember 25, 1996
Studio sessionsSummer 1996 – Soundworks
Songwriter(s)Billy Corgan
Producer(s)Billy Corgan
The Smashing Pumpkins singles chronology
"The End Is the Beginning Is the End"

"Eye" is a song by The Smashing Pumpkins released in 1997 on the soundtrack to the David Lynch film Lost Highway. A promotional single was first released in September 1996. Along with the song "The End Is the Beginning Is the End" from Batman & Robin and "Christmastime" from A Very Special Christmas 3, "Eye" represented a period of work on compilations done by the Pumpkins in between the release of the two albums Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness and Adore. It also appeared on their greatest hits collection Rotten Apples. "Eye" was their first release after the firing of drummer Jimmy Chamberlin.

Though technically it is considered to have been recorded during the tail end of the Mellon Collie era, Billy Corgan has said the spirit of "Eye" was that of the Adore era. The song is about surviving an addictive relationship, and to Corgan conveys more of a "triumph sound" than the dark, angst-driven vibes as some have described it.[1]

Song history[edit | edit source]

In the aftermath of the quadruple-platinum Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, Billy Corgan's music publisher suggested he collaborate with basketball superstar and rapper Shaquille O'Neal, who had begun work on You Can't Stop the Reign.[2][3] Corgan began work on a programmed backing track loosely inspired by Dr. Dre, but the collaboration fell through.[3][4] Corgan later said he voluntarily withdrew after O'Neal didn't seem particularly interested or perhaps even that familiar with Corgan's work when they spoke over the phone.[1]

Meanwhile, film director David Lynch and Nine Inch Nails mastermind Trent Reznor were assembling the soundtrack to Lynch's new film Lost Highway. Lynch, who later would call Corgan a "magical musician",[5] rejected Corgan's submission, "Tear", which would eventually be included on Adore.[3] Corgan quickly finished off "Eye" and Lynch loved it, using it in a nightclub scene in the film.[3] As all other band members were on vacation at the time, Corgan recorded the track all by himself in a single day with engineer Tommy Lipnick.[1]

An acoustic version of the song was performed in 1997 at the Bridge School Benefit concert. The performance featured Twiggy Ramirez and Marilyn Manson.[6]

"Eye" has been performed live by the band periodically throughout the years, opting for a guitar-driven sound with live drums in lieu of a drum machine.[7]

Equipment[edit | edit source]

"Eye" relied heavily on a Kurzweil K2500 for the 808-style beats. A Waldorf VST was used for the synth line, and a 12-string acoustic lined in direct.[8]

Lyrics[edit | edit source]

I lie, I wait
I stop, I hesitate
I am, I breathe
I meant, I think of me

Is it any wonder I can't sleep?
All I have is all you gave to me
Is it any wonder I found peace through you?
Turn to the gates of heaven, to myself be damned
Turn away from light
It's not enough, just a touch
It's not enough

I taste, I love
I come, I bleed enough
I hate, I'm not
I was, I want too much

Is it any wonder I can't sleep?
All I have is all you gave to me
Is it any wonder I found peace through you?
Turn to the gates of heaven, to myself be damned
Turn away from light
It's not enough, just a touch

Reception[edit | edit source]

The song reached number eight on the US Modern Rock Tracks chart in 1997.[9] Corgan later said the surprise success of "Eye" as a single inspired the band to continue with the new electronica-tinged direction as they began work on Adore.[10]

Promotional release[edit | edit source]

A promotional 1-track cassette containing "Eye" was released on September 25, 1996, but was later recalled. It came in a plain white sleeve with black lettering.[11]

Released Label Catalog ID Format Country External sites
September 25, 1996 Virgin Cassette US [1]

Charts[edit | edit source]


Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness2012 Reissue bonus CD 3: Special TeaStudio
Lost HighwayMain releaseSoundtrack
The Aeroplane Flies High2013 Reissue bonus DVD: Live at Malsaucy Lake, Belfort, France; 4 July 1997Box set
Adore2014 Reissue CD 4: Chalices, Palaces and Deep PoolsStudio
The Smashing Pumpkins 1991–1998Promotional CDPromotional • Compilation
Still Becoming ApartUS & Europe promo CDPromotional • EP
A Gothic–Industrial Tribute to Smashing PumpkinsTribute
Ghost Children: A Tribute To The Smashing PumpkinsTribute
Rotten ApplesNorth American versionCompilation
The Killer in You: A Tribute to Smashing PumpkinsTribute
Rarities and B-SidesCompilation
Celebrating *20* Years of SadnessLive

Tour stats

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Corgan, Billy. "Butterfly Suite (with Tommy Lipnick)". iHeartPodcasts. Retrieved September 19, 2022.
  2. Thomas, Richard. "Signal to Noise: The Sonic Diary of the Smashing Pumpkins Archived 2011-09-29 at the w:Wayback Machine. EQ Magazine. October 2008.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Justin Coloma (director), Amy Kettenburg (producer/interviewer) (2009-11-04). DLF.TV Visits Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins (FLV). David Lynch Foundation.
  4. https://film.avclub.com/lost-highway-put-david-lynch-onto-america-s-car-stereos-1798262541
  5. Turner, Gustavo. ""Billy Corgan is a Magical Musician" Declares David Lynch Archived 2009-11-08 at the w:Wayback Machine". LA Weekly Blogs. 2009-11-04.
  6. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NR81pz3TbZE
  7. spfc.org - Tour History - Eye.
  8. Richard Thomas, "Signal To Noise: The Sonic Diary Of The Smashing Pumpkins", Electronic Musician, October 1st, 2008
  9. Billboard Chart History - Smashing Pumpkins
  10. Corgan, Billy. "Coming Down the Mountain Archived 2009-10-07 at the w:Wayback Machine". The Confessions of Billy Corgan.
  11. http://spfreaks.com/item/eye/
  12. "Íslenski Listinn Topp 40 (17.4. '97 – 23.4. '97)". Dagblaðið Vísir (in Icelandic). April 18, 1997. Retrieved October 2, 2019.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)
  13. "The Smashing Pumpkins Chart History (Radio Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved October 2, 2019.
  14. "The Smashing Pumpkins Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved October 2, 2019.
  15. "Árslistinn 1997 – Íslenski Listinn – 100 Vinsælustu Lögin". Dagblaðið Vísir (in íslenska). January 2, 1998. p. 25. Retrieved February 16, 2020.

External links[edit | edit source]