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90's Best Rock and Grunge Songs
The Best Songs from 90s Alternative Rock and Grunge
90s Alternative Rock and Grunge Songs
The 90s produced what is quite possibly the best rock music since the beginning of the genre. I can understand an argument can be made that the 50s, 60s and 70s were each great in their own right. They each took rock music and basically invented and re-invented it. For those rockers in the 60 and 70s there was really nothing to copy. The 80s were a decade of utter crap. Synth pop and heavy metal hair band garbage. It seemed as though rock had killed itself with nothing new...until grunge and alternative rock.
Alt rock crept up into the scene in the 80s. College radio played stuff that mainstream radio would never put on their playlist. It was hit or miss but fun to discover new bands. But then a breakout occurred with the so-called "Seattle sound". It was a different kind of rock. Guitar solos came to an end following the gratuitous hair band metal sound. It was glorious.
The sound was heavy and sludgy. 90's grunde bands like Alice in Chains and Soundgarden were rocking just before Nirvana exploded onto the scene. Then "Smells Like Teen Spirit" changed everything that was rock for a decade. When else has that ever occurred? Has a sound ever crossed into mainstream from college radio to rock stations to pop. Grunge and alt rock was radio in the 90s.
The 2000s have so far been a lost decade for rock. Pop and hip-hop has dominated the airwaves and mainstream for a long time unfortunately. Rock is dead in the 00s, but there is great music to discover from 90s grunge bands and alt rock, some of which I am going to splash onto this lens.
10 Favorite Alternative Rock Songs from the 90s
"Disarm" - This was a lovely slow rocker from Smashing Pumpkins. Still a favorite tune.
"Desperately Wanting" - Better Than Ezra. Smooth rocker.
"How's It Going to Be" - Why Third Eye Blind never made it to super-stardom I'll never know. Love this song. Slow build up to the rocking end.
"Santa Monica" - Is this really alt rock? I dunno. It seemed to get plenty of alternative airplay. Love how it builds to a crunchy end.
"I Was Wrong" - Social Distortion. One of my top 5 bands from the 90's. Hard to say which band I've listened to more from the 90's AIC or Social D.
"Don't Wanna Be Here" - Quite possibly my favorite alt rock album of the 90s was by Cool for August. The band came and went with the one album. Sadly they could have been great.
"Where the River Flows" - Living in Georgia in the 90s you would hear a lot of Collective Soul from the alt radio and college stations. This nifty rocker was a fave.
"Loser" - Beck was so cool in the 90s.
"Live Forever" - Oasis. Classified as alt rock? Tough call but I liked them anyway in the 90s.
"Gone Away" - Huge number of songs from The Offspring that got my toes tapping in the 90's. More punk than alternative but they make my list anyway.
Top 10 Best Grunge Songs
"Smells Like Teen Spirit" - No list will ever go without the breakout sludgy rocker from Nirvana.
"Down in a Hole" - Alice in Chains bluesy rocker is a favorite. I could have played it safe and added "Man in the Box" but frankly there were a lot of great songs from Alice in Chains during the 90s.
"Little Things" - Bush was always compared to Nirvana and not exactly in a good way. I personally thought their music was more fun and really enjoyed this song a lot.
"Cumbersome" - Seven Mary 3 was a great band. This was a great song. Gravelly vocals. Hard rocker.
"Spoonman" - I know I am supposed to like Soundgarden but this is about the only song that really did it for me.
"All I Know" - Screaming Trees never made it big out of Seattle. Pity. They were the Seattle sound. Among the Godfathers of grunge.
"Sex Type Thing" - Stone Temple Pilots had plenty of popular songs in the 90s. This rowdy, maybe sexy, rocker, was the best.
"Would" - Multiple tunes by my favorite 90s band, AIC, would necessarily end up here. This was a lovely song from the movie "Singles" which tried to chronicle the era. It mostly failed.
"Low" - Cool song by Cracker. I doubt they would classify themselves as grunge but this tune certainly sounded like it.
"Tomorrow" - Silverchair were kids when they came up with this tune. The lyrics are stupid. Guitars rock hard. Good enough.
Best 90's Rock Albums
90s Grunge and Alternative Music Poll
Who is Your Favorite Grunge Band From the 90's
Favorite Smashing Pumpkins Video
Smashing Pumpkins "Disarm" from Siamese Dream
Favorite Alice in Chains Video
Down in Hole from the Dirt album. Moody and melodic this has been my favorite AIC song to this day.
Social D - I Was Wrong
Local H - High Fivin' MF
This song is awesome. So much noise. Excellent cynical lyrics. Two guys? Really? Loved this band. Man, where did this type music go?