Here are my choices for best alternative albums from the 1990s. I think I picked some good ones since I am a fan of ’90s Rock Music.
10. Band: L7
Album: Brick’s are Heavy
This album makes my number 10 on my list for the song “Pretend Were Dead. ” While I enjoyed the others song from them, this is my favorite song from the 11 song album and really worth your awhile. While Alice in Chains and Nirvana was giving out some good grunge tunes this band was right there with them. The all girl band knew how to rock.
9. Band: Live
Album: Throwing Cooper
Live was a major band for me growing up and this album had my favorite songs on it and that I grew up with. “I Alone,” “All of You,” Selling Drama” and “Lighting Crashes” are the best songs from this album. “I Alone” I personally think is the sweetest ’90s song out there and “Lighting Crashes” that song brings every emotion to you while you listen to it. Live is a band to me that was around the grunge days but made their own mark on music in the Alternative business. I really think when you hear their songs you know it’s them and they are memorable.
8. Band: REM
Album: Out of Time
REM got their break in the 80s but they made a great album in the 90s. This album is twenty years old but you can’t date it to tell you the truth. Two of the major songs that I think make this album amazing are “Shiny Happy People” and the best one “Losing My Religion.” That song is darker than most REM songs and my favorite part from the song is:
That’s me in the corner
That’s me in the spotlight, I’m
Losing my religion
Trying to keep up with you
And I don’t know if I can do it
Oh no, I’ve said too much
I haven’t said enough
I thought that I heard you laughing
I thought that I heard you sing
I think I thought I saw you try.
REM never was my favorite band but I could never deny that they sang well and deserve a place on my list.
7. Band: Cranberries
Album: No Need to Argue
I made sure I added them while not all of their songs are memorable you can’t tell me that “Zombie” doesn’t give you goose bumps. The song is very emotional and if you listen to the lyrics you will know why. According to the lead singer she said that this song was made because the death of two children in 1993, because of an IRA bombing. If you’re not aware of the Cranberries then you need this album because I think it’s their best one and really because of the song well “Zombie.” Would be higher on the list I think if it had more songs like “Zombie.”
6. Band: Stone Temple Pilots
I just love these guys every song just makes you want to dance. Scott Weilands has an amazing voice and to tell you the truth I almost died when I heard their new stuff it felt like the ’90s were back. This album was their debut and was released in 1992. So many great songs on here, “Dead and Bloated,” Sexy Type Thing”, and “Wicked Garden” are the top three out of the twelve songs. Of course I liked “Creep” but it was not as great as the others, it lacked something for me. “Wicked Garden” I think was the coolest song from them and it had a fast beat and a little sexy too. For a first album it’s impressive for sure.
5. Band: Pearl Jam
Maybe I should have added them at least at three but one thing I dislike about Pearl Jam is the way that Eddie Vedder sings, not in a bad way but sometimes like “Yellow Ledbetter” you’re wondering what? I know the song isn’t on this album. Any way I would like to start with talking about the song “Jeremy” I think it was different to sing about the shooting, because we sometimes forget about bullying and problems kids go through. Personally it makes me a little teary eyed actually and I can’t even watch the video. Not because it’s sad all together but because of the realism of life. They tackle other social problems in this album like “Even Flow” deals with homelessness and “Why Go” deals with mental hospitals. “Black” are not a fan of that song the only real problem I have with the album. “Release” is really good and not really a major song from them not saying it’s not popular but “Even Flow” sure beats it as most popular. To me this is their best album to date.
4. Band: Candlebox
“Far Behind” and “You” are their most angry songs in my opinion on this album. “Cover Me” a popular song from them is heartbreaking. Kevin Martin has a good voice and I think that’s why I like Candlebox so much is the voice and lyrics. While they did get criticized for jumping on the bandwagon in the ’90s, they are very different than the bands listed on here. In my top four because it was a band that really I grew up with like below Bush is another band that I listened to a lot.
3. Band: Bush
Album: 16 Stone
The band from Great Britain, these guys are great. I bought the CD some years ago and “Everything Zen” was like my theme song. 16 Stone is wonderful and I’ll tell you why, Gavin Rossdale’s voice. He can do slow songs like “Comedown “and “Glycerin” to fast pace song like “Machinehead .” There are songs on here that I didn’t enjoy but overall it’s a great piece. I would say everyone needs a copy of this CD if they are Alternative fans.
2. Band: Nirvana
An album I can say that I love every single song on it. Kurt Cobain had a voice and it’s a shame that he died young because I still think that he could be throwing out CDs to the masses. Nirvana is a band that has a song for everyone and still almost twenty years old it hasn’t dated any. Where to begin with the songs are here well “Lithium “of course was a song that I think is my favorite out of them. “Smells like Teen Spirit,” was a big hit and still in my opinion is. “Come as You Are,” is haunting and beautiful and who would think that grunge could be called beautiful. It’s hard to pick really favorites so if you want that CD where no song is bad Nirvana is you key. For trivia here in 2005 the Library of Congress even added Nevermind to the National Registry which collects music culturally, historically or aesthetically important sound recordings from the 20th century.
1. Band: Alice in Chains
If Alice in Chains was never a band and then Nirvana would have been first probably. This album beats every album on the list because of the haunting voices of Layne Stanley and Jerry Cantrell. Every song is moving and so well it kind of makes you think while you listen. What I mean is there are songs that are cool for like a month and you forget about them but every song from Alice Chains it’s hard to forget about. If you’re talking ’90s music then Alice in Chains is your band. While Nirvana is great but Alice in Chains had more of a voice that wasn’t like screaming or shouting, they sang slower and still have enough power in the lyrics to hit you. They have their own voice and I like that. Basically they made a song called “Rooster” that is good; normally a song called Rooster just sounds a little different. But not in this case, it’s a powerful haunting song I could even compared it to “Zombies” from the Cranberries but even better. Now Alice in Chains album Dirt is really impressive, there lyrics were dark but not like gothic dark just about the world. Going back to “Rooster” it’s said to be about Jerry Cantrell’s dad who served in Vietnam and his nickname was Rooster. While you hear a lot about bands in the ’90s about teen angst these guys was writing about angst around the world, now and historically. “Angry Chair” is another song from them that is just so powerful, those lyrics “Sitting on an Angry Chair”, simple but really when you hear it, your like wow. Maybe I give them too much credit but they are great and to this day they are still great. Did you hear their new CD? I enjoyed it but really miss Layne Stanley and I’m glad that Jerry Cantrell keeps the band rolling because to me it means that they’re not another dust in the wind.
To tell you the truth this was really hard for me to write because I love so many bands from the 90s and would like to say that honorable mentions would be Radiohead, The Smashing Pumpkins, Garbage, and so many others. I hope you enjoyed my personal thoughts and you may or may not agree and that’s fine. We all have different tastes.