Grunge. While the 1990s developed a lot of subgenres of music, grunge is by far the most influential movement of the decade. There were mimics of the subgenre and then bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam.
But you know most of those albums, right? Heck, you might even know a couple of albums by the bands that follow, but on the list that follows, I don't have any best-known records. Instead, I have must-haves for your record collection.
Like every decade, the 1990s produced a ton of fantastic music. A lot of which might have been overlooked. And here are three albums you might want to be more familiar with.
Three must-have albums from the 1990s
Placebo - Without You I'm Nothing
A criminally overlooked back globally, Placebo is the glam-rock group from the 1990s that you should have on heavy rotation. Are too many of their songs about drug use? Maybe, but that doesn't mean the tracks aren't still great. Plus, the band has always had a way to relate the songs regarding drug use into tracks that make the listener recall some failed relationship with another human.
Without You I'm Nothing is likely Placebo's most consistent album. Opener "Pure Morning" starts off industrial and never really withdraws its intensity though it grows in volume and depth. But the standout is "You Don't Care About Us" which will sweep you away while give you all the bittersweet feelings you long for.
Stone Temple Pilots - Tiny Music...Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop
The least appreciated of the first three Stone Temple Pilots albums (likely because the first two, Core and Purple, are absolute monsters), Tiny Music... is a band all grown up and in complete control of its powers. This record isn't toned down as much as the tracks are just sonically different from their predecessors.
Instead of Black Sabbath there is more late 1960s psychedelia on this album. But the gems are "Lady Picture Show" and "Big Bang Baby," though there are zero bad tracks on this album. For a band some had written off a grunge rip-offs, their third record made sure they could prove they could stand alone.
Manic Street Preachers - This is My Truth Tell Me Yours
Just two albums removed from the band's masterpiece, The Holy Bible, but four years passed, the Manic Street Preachers released an album of sonic depth and lyrical longing. The aggressiveness of Holy Bible is mostly gone, but the beauty of the tracks is astonishing. It takes a group of immense confidence and talent to release an album with an opening track ("The Everlasting") that is so achingly sad and at six minutes that the listener wants to do nothing else but turn the lights out, put on the headphones, and let the rest of the album seep in.
There are no bad tracks on the record. Songs eight through 10 are almost one song with their theme of melancholy, but no lack of quality. If you haven't checked out Manic Street Preachers yet, this record is a must for your future collection. But with the Manics just listen to the albums in order of release because you will get even more from them.