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Tag: Attack of the '90s (21-30 of 90)

Revisiting Smashing Pumpkins' 'Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness'


When I was in the eighth grade, I spent the entirety of my holiday break working on an assignment for my English class. The assignment was open-ended, so I decided to tackle the one thing I had always wanted to do: Write up my top ten albums of the year list, along with my picks for the five worst. (It’s a format that has become pretty familiar.) It was my first — half-hearted, completely blind — attempt to elevate the thing I loved into something that really meant something.

The list itself has been lost to history (it was put together on a Smith-Corona word processor that only possessed enough memory to keep track of the document you were currently working on), but there are a handful of aspects about it I do remember very clearly. It definitely had an introduction that attempted to sum up the musical zeitgeist of 1995, which was mostly a rant against Hootie & the Blowfish, whose music I hated (still do, really).

I know I included Pearl Jam’s Vitalogy on the list even though it came out at the end of 1994, and the write-up for it was mostly an argument for its inclusion, as though anybody cared about the fake rules I had set upon myself and then immediately broke (I think I had to make the same argument for Bush’s Sixteen Stone, though I can’t remember if I included it on the list or just spent time obsessively defending it in other reviews). Collective Soul’s self-titled second album was in the top five, and I also know that Garbage’s self-titled debut was way up there. My really “edgy” pick was Flaming Lips’ Clouds Taste Metallic, which I discovered via the one-two punch of the BMG Music Service and Batman Forever.

The number one spot was controversial. My friend Zack got wind of what I was doing, and he started lobbying hard for me to name Rancid’s …And Out Come The Wolves the top long-player of the year, as though it would have actually had any kind of impact on anybody. Remember, this wasn’t even for a school paper or anything—this was going to be seen by me, my English teacher, and maybe my mom if she was curious enough. READ FULL STORY

Fred Durst says the reason Limp Bizkit isn't around is because you don't love Limp Bizkit enough

At the height of their popularity, Limp Bizkit rarely did anything understated. Remember when they charged through Times Square with an army of “Bizkettes” in honor of a single called “Nookie”? Yeah, that happened.

But you can only hold a bomb so long before it explodes — or at least it weakens to the point of being sort of invisible. That’s the current state of Limp Bizkit, and while they remain a band, you probably won’t be seeing them any time soon.

In a conversation with UK metal magazine Kerrang!, Bizkit frontman Fred Durst admitted that there’s little demand for the group in their home nation. READ FULL STORY

Lollapalooza: Afghan Whigs' Greg Dulli has one festival goal: See Frank Ocean

The recently reconstituted Afghan Whigs have always known their way around a cover, and their most recent one might be their most winning yet.

The band has been playing Frank Ocean’s “Love Crimes,” a signature track from his critically-acclaimed 2011 mixtape nostalgiaULTRA, as part of their set since getting back together earlier this year. The band just recorded the track and gave it away on their website.

Frontman Greg Dulli’s appreciation for the alt R&B star runs deep: “I really want to see Frank Ocean Saturday night,” Dulli told EW in the Afghan Whigs’ dressing room just a few minutes before taking the stage for his own show. “He has such great words. He’s a great songwriter, and his words are really deep. The opening lines of the song, ‘Talk to me without hearing, touching me without feeling,’ I thought that was really intensely beautiful. He really has something. I saw him play in L.A. a couple of weeks ago, and it was a really phenomenal show.”

The Afghan Whigs had a pretty exceptional set themselves, making even their darkest tunes (especially the raucous “What Jail Is Like”) fly over the crowd in Chicago’s Grant Park –like the flock of geese who seemed particularly enthralled by Dulli’s vocalizations.

Oddly, the song that got the biggest reaction from the crowd was the group’s cover of Marie Queenie Lyons’ soul classic “See and Don’t See,” a quiet little burner that captured the attention of even the most shirtless-bro members of the masses.

Complete Music Festival Coverage at
Lollapalooza playlist: From Passion Pit to The Shins and more — LISTEN
Lollapalooza 2012: Five questions going into the weekend

The Wallflowers debut new Mick Jones-assisted single 'Reboot the Mission'

Perhaps not wanting to be upstaged by his dad or by the rest of the ’90s survivors dropping new material in 2012, Jakob Dylan stepped up this morning to offer a new Wallflowers single today.

“Reboot the Mission” features former Clash member Mick Jones, and borrows the band’s rocksteady vibe, too.

In the song, Dylan even shouts out the Clash’s late frontman Joe Strummer by name while welcoming new Wallflowers drummer Jack Irons (previously of Red Hot Chili Peppers, Pearl Jam, and Strummer’s short-lived band the Latino Rockabilly War).

“Reboot” is the first single from the Wallflowers upcoming new album Glad All Over, which will be out in October. Rolling Stone has the exclusive stream this morning, but it will be available tomorrow as a free download at the band’s official site.


VH1's '40 Greatest R&B Songs of the '90s': Bobby Brown, Ginuwine, Boyz II Men -- EXCLUSIVE

Despite Chris Rock’s protestations (“It’s just people singing over rap beats!”), R&B had a fruitful and vibrant decade from 1990 to 2000: The rise of New Jack Swing, the innovation of hip-hop soul, a bevy of breakout stars, and the ever expanding and collapsing boundaries of the genre.

To celebrate the Age of Irony’s best booty shakers and slow jams, VH1 is airing “40 Greatest R&B Songs of the ’90s” on Thursday night at 9 p.m. With the assistance of stars like Usher and Keith Sweat, the countdown special tips its hat to smashes like Ginuwine’s “Pony,” Boyz II Men’s “Motownphilly,” and Bobby Brown’s immortal “Humpin’ Around.”

In fact, all three of those songs appear in the bottom 10 of the countdown. Check out entries 40 to 30 in an exclusive reveal below.


Gene Ween ends Ween after 25 years, doesn't tell Dean Ween

For more than a quarter of a century, Aaron Freeman (Gene Ween) and Mickey Melchiondo (Dean Ween) have been operating on the fringes of the rock world as Ween, one of the weirdest cult bands to ever land on MTV.

Under the aliases Gene and Dean Ween, the pair built up a relatively small but rabid following, but went relatively quiet in recent years — the band hadn’t put out a new album since 2007′s La Cucaracha. Now, Freeman says the band will be permanently pushing up th’ little daisies.

“It’s time to move on,” Freeman told Rolling Stone. “I’m retiring Gene Ween. It’s been a long time. It was a good run.” He recently released his first solo album Marvelous Clouds and will continue to make music under his government name.

Unfortunately, this all came as a surprise to Melchiondo, who was apparently not aware that his lifelong musical project was being retired. “[It's] news to me, all I can say for now I guess,” Melchiondo wrote on Ween’s Facebook page. There hasn’t been an official statement about the status of the band, and though it’s been five years since their last album, the pair played concerts together at the end of 2011.

In their heyday, Ween were embraced by the 120 Minutes generation that also made bands like the Butthole Surfers, Ass Ponys, They Might Be Giants, and Primus into semi-mainstream sensations. The ’90s turned out be their their most successful and productive period, cresting with 1994′s Chocolate and Cheese, 1996′s 12 Golden Country Greats, and 1997′s The Mollusk.

But they remained beloved by their core fans, and by several similarly oddball tastemakers in the mainstream as well: Their song “Ocean Man” appeared in The Spongebob Squarepants Movie, and “The Rainbow” showed up on Chef Aid: The South Park AlbumREAD FULL STORY

Collective Soul's Dean Roland talks new tour and '90s nostalgia

In 1994, five guys from Georgia scored with a big-hooked rock song called “Shine.” The single rose up the old-fashioned way, finding major airplay on college radio and gradually bleeding into the mainstream. “Shine” ended up just missing the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100, but it did send the group’s debut album Hints, Allegations, and Things Left Unsaid to double platinum status, despite the fact that it was a collection of barely mixed demos.

Seven albums and 18 years later, Collective Soul are still a band (though now a quartet), and just launched their first tour in four years. The focus of this run is their fourth album, 1999′s Dosage. We’ve seen plenty of ’90s nostalgia tours, many of which are centered around iconic albums. Those albums tend to be critical favorites or commercial juggernauts (or both), but Dosage is neither.

It was not the band’s biggest seller (that was 1995′s self-titled release) nor does it contain its biggest hit (“Shine” still holds that distinction). So why elevate it to legendary status? READ FULL STORY

On the tenth anniversary of Lisa 'Left Eye' Lopes' death, TLC announces 'reunion' tour

A decade ago today, TLC rapper Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, the most volatile and outspoken member of the platinum R&B trio, passed away following a car accident in Honduras. She was 30 years old. Lopes left behind a legacy of controversy (in 1994, she famously set her NFL player boyfriend’s house on fire) and huge hits (TLC notched four number ones and sold 22 million albums in the nine years they were together).

Now TMZ is reporting that surviving members Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas are planning a reunion tour that would incorporate Left Eye into the show via archival footage. It’s not the same as Dr. Dre resurrecting Tupac for a drop-in, but it does further the idea that death need not be the end of a performer’s on-stage life.

Following Lopes’ death, Watkins and Thomas finished the group’s final album 3D without her. Though it was unclear whether or not the group would have stayed together had Left Eye survived the car crash; in a notorious statement published in the pages of Entertainment Weekly, she challenged her other two bandmates (plus producer Dallas Austin) to a showdown where the victor would be decided by album sales.

“I challenge Tionne ‘Player’ Watkins and Rozonda ‘Hater’ Thomas to an album entitled The Challenge, a 3-CD set that contains three solo albums,” she wrote. READ FULL STORY

Record Store Day 2012 preview: The best vinyl, the coolest stores


Today, thousands of fastidious collectors are waking up way too early for a Saturday, standing  in silly lines with their brethren, and diving deep into crates to pay premium bank for the privilege of owning a handful of the dozens of exclusive vinyl releases being put out as part of the sixth annual Record Store Day.

And I couldn’t be happier.

Launched in 2007, Record Store Day celebrates the independent music shop, an institution that has been under attack since well before the Internet threatened to dismantle the music business. Really, it’s a day to celebrate the relative resilience of these little shingles that could. After all, they survived the format wars, outlived massive chains like Tower Records and Virgin Megastore, and stuck out the first wave of file sharing (Napster, Gnutella, and the like).

With vinyl sales surging and interest in sprawling music discovery zones like Amoeba Records steadily growing, it’s a good time to be a fan of black discs that go around and around and around. This year’s exclusive Record Store Day features the release of several dozen exclusive pieces of vinyl, which may or may not be available at your local emporium (it pays to hit up more than one spot, if only to observe the crowds at each location). READ FULL STORY

Soundgarden's new 'Avengers' single 'Live to Rise' -- their first in 16 years -- available as free download today

The last time Soundgarden wrote and recorded a new song together, Bill Clinton was president and Independence Day was the top-grossing movie at the multiplex. (“Black Rain,” the “new” song from the band’s 2010 release Telephantasm, doesn’t count, since it dates all the way back to the Badmotorfinger era.)

But that was 1996. Since another relic from that year is suddenly walking around again, why wouldn’t the newly-revived Soundgarden get back together for a new single for the soundtrack to the all-superheroes-on-deck action flick The Avengers?

That very thing exists now. “Live to Rise” has been floating around the Internet for a minute, but now it has been officially released and will be available for free on iTunes starting today until next Tuesday, April 24.

So has anything changed in the 16 years between original Soundgarden compositions? READ FULL STORY

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