Best Albums of the 90s

Young Williams

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Here’s what writer and director Cameron Crowe, who personally assembled the soundtrack, has to say on the subject.




Reading between the lines, I don’t think Crowe ever really wanted Nirvana on the soundtrack.

It’s obvious that he was personal and emotionally invested in other bands like Alice In Chains, Pearl Jam, and Mudhoney, based on his personal experiences and relationships in Seattle in the late 80s and early 90s.

Not so with Nirvana. This interview and other sources show that he didn’t bring Nirvana to the table, based on what he wanted. Instead, Warner Brothers brought Nirvana to him, because of their commercial success.

Him saying that “I think Nirvana didn’t want to be a part of it” is a diplomatic way of not having to say that he didn’t really want their music on the soundtrack to begin with.

BTW, a trivia question for the resident Cobain sycophants—when did Alice In Chains’ “Man in the Box” first chart in comparison to when “Smells Like Teen Spirit” first charted.
This is actually what I remembered reading that made me post my initial response. Not sure I take away from that what you take away from that, but I acknowledge there's room for interpretation.

Either way, I'm glad Nirvana isn't on that soundtrack. I can't imagine a song of theirs that would particularly fit the vibe. Though it would be fascinating to know what Crowe would've included if he could've had any Nirvana song and had to include them.

That soundtrack needed some Ray Charles and Quincy Jones, in my opinion. I love having Jimi and the Heart sisters on there.
 
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junglerules

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Here’s a great read about a bunch of “behind the scenes” stuff of the Nirvana Unplugged episode. Tons of minutia, but also lots of intriguing details, in my opinion.

I think the covers of “Lake of Fire,” “Jesus Don’t Want Me for a Sunbeam” and “Where Did You Sleep Last Night?” were my favorite tracks from the show.

 

junglerules

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+Live+ is also celebrating the 25th anniversary of "Throwing Copper" this year. They are re-releasing the album with 3 b-side cuts that didn't make it, and there are also packages available that will include the full 1994 Woodstock set. Still one of my favorite albums to this day. Found myself stuck down in a Youtube rabbit hole watching old concerts of theirs yesterday....
Bump. This came out yesterday. Really enjoy the Woodstock release. Feels rare to hear a concert version of "Top" since it doesn't get played much nowadays. Just a short but really solid set. Worth a listen, and you can buy it on its own if you don't want the re-issued album.
 

MikeHdez12

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Where does Third Eye Blind's debut album fall on this list? It's not an all-timer, likely not a top ten album, but it was quintessential 90s. Big time radio singles on that one and it was a pretty solid listen.
 
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junglerules

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Where does Third Eye Blind's debut album fall on this list? It's not an all-timer, likely not a top ten album, but it was quintessential 90s. Big time radio singles on that one and it was a pretty solid listen.
I like it a lot. I'm always a fan of albums I can listen to all the way through without feeling compelled to skip a track, and I think it fits that bill. I also really like a bunch of the tracks that weren't singles, like "Burning Man," "Motorcycle Drive By" and "God of Wine."

3EB was also one of the many bands at the Rockfest show in Fort Worth back in 1997, I think. It would be interesting to know how many people on this board were at that show! I know it was a bitch to get out of the parking lot after the show that night!
 

MikeHdez12

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I like it a lot. I'm always a fan of albums I can listen to all the way through without feeling compelled to skip a track, and I think it fits that bill. I also really like a bunch of the tracks that weren't singles, like "Burning Man," "Motorcycle Drive By" and "God of Wine."

3EB was also one of the many bands at the Rockfest show in Fort Worth back in 1997, I think. It would be interesting to know how many people on this board were at that show! I know it was a bitch to get out of the parking lot after the show that night!
I don't think I've ever been to a show where it was easy to get out of the parking lot afterward. I remember RHCP in 2012 here at the AT&T Center, I thought it was gonna be morning by the time we got home.

It's funny, though. I've always had a weird hang up about listening to albums where I don't even consider skipping tracks. As if I'm disrespecting the artists by doing that or something. It's goofy but it's my thing. This album definitely just rolls from one track to the next though.

Anyway, yeah, good album today that was pretty great when it came out. How's It Going to Be will always have a special place in my heart, but Graduate is a lesser known tune that I instantly enjoyed.
 
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junglerules

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I don't think I've ever been to a show where it was easy to get out of the parking lot afterward. I remember RHCP in 2012 here at the AT&T Center, I thought it was gonna be morning by the time we got home.

It's funny, though. I've always had a weird hang up about listening to albums where I don't even consider skipping tracks. As if I'm disrespecting the artists by doing that or something. It's goofy but it's my thing. This album definitely just rolls from one track to the next though.

Anyway, yeah, good album today that was pretty great when it came out. How's It Going to Be will always have a special place in my heart, but Graduate is a lesser known tune that I instantly enjoyed.
No worries. I love those albums where my favorite songs ebb and flow. Like, today one song might be my favorite, and the next day a different one, and another after that. Always feels like the sign of a good album.

****, I forgot to mention how much I loved "Narcolepsy" earlier. That was another great non-radio track. "Semi-Charmed Life" is fantastic, despite getting an overload of airplay. I remember how surprised I was to hear the extended version the first time. "Losing A Whole Year"- was that a single, too, or no? I heard it so much, but can't recall if it was on the radio or the cd.
 

MikeHdez12

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Setting aside the obvious impossibility that one can rank songs in this manner, there's so much pop on this list, which I understand is necessary but renders the list not for me.
 

junglerules

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Setting aside the obvious impossibility that one can rank songs in this manner, there's so much pop on this list, which I understand is necessary but renders the list not for me.
Plenty of stuff I like, plenty of stuff I don't, and a dose of stuff I've never heard of. I have nothing against pop. If I like it, I like it.
 

idighorns

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Hahaha! I find All Star being on this list, Summer Girls, and Believe by Cher to be offensive. Come on, Learn to Fly was in '99!
Summer Girls was the worst, even having a soft spot for pop and/or boy bands doesn’t justify that. Also, “Miami” by Will Smith is just terrible, probably his worst song. The Jay Z song is awful (been hearing it on the Throwbacks station a lot). I also truly loathe that Santana album.
 

MikeHdez12

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Summer Girls was the worst, even having a soft spot for pop and/or boy bands doesn’t justify that. Also, “Miami” by Will Smith is just terrible, probably his worst song. The Jay Z song is awful (been hearing it on the Throwbacks station a lot). I also truly loathe that Santana album.
Well, if we're gonna have a go at this list, was Steal my Sunshine worthy of a top five spot? I remember it well and it's genuinely enjoyable, but that's pretty high.

Conversely, Get What You Give was back in the twenties or so. I thought it was more popular than that, mostly because it has that tried and true effect of being able to shout "ass!" at an effective point. "...Kick your asses!" You can do that in Santeria, "punkass!" and Pretty Fly, "Lily ass!" and those were both big smashes. Always an effective tool to boost your song.
 
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idighorns

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Well, if we're gonna have a go at this list, was Steal my Sunshine worthy of a top five spot? I remember it well and it's genuinely enjoyable, but that's pretty high.

Conversely, Get What You Give was back in the twenties or so. I thought it was more popular than that, mostly because it has that tried and true effect of being able to shout "ass!" at an effective point. "...Kick your asses!" You can do that in Santeria, "punkass!" and Pretty Fly, "Lily ass!" and those were both big smashes. Always an effective tool to boost your song.
I didn’t make it through the whole list as the format was basically unreadable, got about half way and quit. “Steal my Sunshine” is legit one of my favorite pop songs and usually ends up being played at our house on drunken nights. So I’m biased there.
 

MikeHdez12

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I didn’t make it through the whole list as the format was basically unreadable, got about half way and quit. “Steal my Sunshine” is legit one of my favorite pop songs and usually ends up being played at our house on drunken nights. So I’m biased there.
You know, Steal My Sunshine is a good song. Top five it is!

As an aside, along the same lines, though it's a decade too early to be on this list, Groove is in the Heart ****in bangs. Same kind of cool feel. Bootsy on the bass, dropping his signature "oh well uh" and "wooow" makes it spectacular.


Quickly browsing through a wiki page, here's some snubs which I will fight someone for saying don't belong on the list not because I think they're all necessarily great but because they captured that year which I remember so well:

Save Tonight, Eagle Eye Cherry
Dizzy, Goo Goo Dolls (Come on, Ringer, that's just good Goo)
Jumper, 3EB
Every Morning, Sugar Ray
Kiss me(!), Sixpence None The Richer (Come the **** on!!)
Someday, Sugar Ray
I Need to Know, Marc Anthony (Not for me but my mom's and all my tia's jam forever)
 
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idighorns

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You know, Steal My Sunshine is a good song. Top five it is!

As an aside, along the same lines, though it's a decade too early to be on this list, Groove is in the Heart ****in bangs. Same kind of cool feel. Bootsy on the bass, dropping his signature "oh well uh" and "wooow" makes it spectacular.


Quickly browsing through a wiki page, here's some snubs which I will fight someone for saying don't belong on the list not because I think they're all necessarily great but because they captured that year which I remember so well:

Save Tonight, Eagle Eye Cherry
Dizzy, Goo Goo Dolls (Come on, Ringer, that's just good Goo)
Jumper, 3EB
Every Morning, Sugar Ray
Kiss me(!), Sixpence None The Richer (Come the **** on!!)
Someday, Sugar Ray
I Need to Know, Marc Anthony (Not for me but my mom's and all my tia's jam forever)
Save Tonight is an excellent song, much better than Get What You Give.
I love Sugar Ray and I don't care who knows, and I agree that those tunes capture that time as much as some of those one hit wonders. Mambo #5, for example, is a damned novelty song.