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Best 90s Bands

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The 90s were a great decade for music, with a wide variety of genres and styles emerging. From the grunge sound of Nirvana to the pop-punk of Blink-182, the 90s saw the rise of some of the most iconic bands of all time.

In this article, we will take a look at some of the best 90s bands and explore why they remain so popular today. We’ll discuss their music, their influence, and their lasting impact on the music industry. So, let’s get started.

What is 90s music?

The 1990s saw the rise of a number of popular music genres, including alternative rock, grunge, hip hop, pop and R&B. This decade was also a time of great technological advancement, leading to the widespread use of digital music production techniques and the emergence of the internet as a major influence on the music industry.

Alternative rock was a popular genre in the early to mid-1990s, with bands like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Soundgarden leading the way. Grunge, a subgenre of alternative rock, was also popular in the 1990s, with bands like Alice in Chains and Stone Temple Pilots gaining mainstream success.

Hip-hop was also a major force in the 1990s, with artists such as Tupac Shakur, The Notorious B.I.G., and Dr. Dre leading the way. Pop music was also popular in the 1990s, with artists such as Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, and Spice Girls becoming household names.

R&B also saw a surge in popularity in the 1990s, with artists like Mary J. Blige, TLC, and Boyz II Men becoming some of the most popular acts of the decade.

The 1990s also was a major influence on the music industry, with the advent of digital music production techniques, file sharing, and streaming services. This led to the rise of a number of independent labels and artists, as well as the development of new music genres such as electronic dance music and trip-hop.


Nirvana was a 90s rock band from Seattle, Washington, formed in 1987 by singer/guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic. Their sound blended elements of punk, grunge, and alternative rock, and their songwriting was often marked by Cobain’s introspective and often dark lyrics. Nirvana gained massive popularity in the early 1990s, and the song “Smells Like Teen Spirit” from their 1991 album Nevermind became a generational anthem. 

Nirvana’s music was significant in bringing alternative rock into the mainstream, and its success helped to popularize the grunge genre. The band’s sudden success and Cobain’s tragic death in 1994 made them one of the most iconic rock bands of the 90s.

Green Days

Green Day is an American rock band formed in 1987 in Berkeley, California. The band is composed of lead vocalist and guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong, bassist and backing vocalist Mike Dirnt, and drummer Tré Cool. Green Day is one of the best-selling bands of all time, having sold more than 75 million records worldwide.

Green Day’s sound is rooted in punk rock but also incorporates elements of pop punk, alternative rock, and pop. Their early albums were characterized by a raw, fast-paced sound and irreverent lyrics, but as the band matured, their sound evolved to incorporate a wide variety of styles and influences.

Green Day’s success can be attributed to their catchy melodies and energetic live performances, as well as their ability to connect with their audience. Their songs often deal with themes of rebellion, alienation, and teenage angst, which resonated with many of their fans. The band has also been recognized for their activism, particularly their support of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Red Hot Chilli Peppers

The Red Hot Chili Peppers are a funk rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1983. The band consists of vocalist Anthony Kiedis, bassist Flea, drummer Chad Smith, and guitarist John Frusciante. The band’s musical style primarily consists of rock with an emphasis on funk, as well as elements from other genres such as punk rock and psychedelic rock.

The Red Hot Chili Peppers achieved mainstream success with their fifth studio album, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, in 1991. The album’s lead single, “Under the Bridge”, peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100, and the album sold over 16 million copies worldwide, establishing the band as a household name. The band’s follow-up album, One Hot Minute, was released in 1995, and while it was not as successful as its predecessor, it still achieved Gold status.

The Red Hot Chili Peppers have continued to remain popular over the years, thanks to their unique blend of funk, rock, and punk. Their live performances are known for their energetic and passionate performances, which often include extended improvisations. The band has also been praised for their willingness to experiment with different musical styles, and for their socially conscious lyrics.

Pearl Jam

Pearl Jam is an American rock band from Seattle, Washington, formed in 1990. The band’s lineup consists of Eddie Vedder (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Mike McCready (lead guitar), Stone Gossard (rhythm guitar), Jeff Ament (bass), and Matt Cameron (drums). Their debut album, Ten, catapulted them to immense popularity and established them as one of the most influential and important bands of the 1990s.

Pearl Jam’s sound is a mix of punk, alternative, and classic rock. They are known for their powerful live performances and their intense, emotionally charged lyrics. They have also been praised for their commitment to social and political causes, such as environmentalism and animal rights. They have won numerous awards, including two Grammy Awards and an MTV Video Music Award.

Pearl Jam’s popularity was driven by their unique sound, their passionate lyrics, and their commitment to social causes. They have become one of the most successful and influential bands of the past three decades, and their music continues to inspire and influence new generations of listeners.


Oasis was an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1991. The band was composed of brothers Liam Gallagher (vocals and tambourine) and Noel Gallagher (lead guitar, vocals, and songwriter). The group was one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed bands of the 1990s.

Oasis’ musical style was heavily influenced by the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, and the Sex Pistols, as well as many other bands of the 1960s and 1970s. The band’s sound was characterized by a blend of melodic pop-rock, classic rock, and Britpop, as well as a strong sense of attitude and swagger.

The band achieved great success in the UK, where their first two albums sold over 10 million copies combined. The band also achieved success in the US, where their third album, Be Here Now, sold over 4 million copies. Oasis was also known for their energetic live performances and their rivalry with fellow Britpop band Blur.

Oasis was one of the most successful and influential bands of the 1990s, and their popularity and influence have continued to this day. The band’s music has been covered by many other artists and continues to be popular with fans of all ages.

The Smashing Pumpkins

The Smashing Pumpkins were an alternative rock band formed in Chicago, Illinois in 1988. The band’s original lineup consisted of Billy Corgan (vocals and guitar), James Iha (guitar), D’arcy Wretzky (bass), and Jimmy Chamberlin (drums).

The band rose to fame in the early 1990s with their album Siamese Dream, which was certified quadruple platinum. The band’s follow-up album, Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness was released in 1995 and was a commercial and critical success, earning the band seven Grammy Award nominations.

The Smashing Pumpkins were known for their unique blend of alternative rock, heavy metal, and dream pop, as well as their innovative use of guitar effects and studio experimentation. They also had a strong visual aesthetic, with their music videos and stage shows often featuring surreal, dark imagery. The band’s frontman, Billy Corgan, was also known for his outspoken views and his active involvement in the alternative rock scene.

The Smashing Pumpkins were one of the most successful alternative rock bands of the 1990s, and their influence on modern rock music is still felt today.


Blur is an English rock band formed in London in 1988. The band consists of singer/keyboardist Damon Albarn, guitarist/singer Graham Coxon, bassist Alex James and drummer Dave Rowntree. Blur rose to prominence during the Britpop era of the early 1990s and were one of the most successful acts of the era.

Blur’s music is characterized by catchy hooks, melodic riffs, and a mix of musical styles, including alternative rock, indie rock, Britpop, psychedelic rock, and shoegaze. The band’s lyrical themes often focus on British culture, relationships, and modern life. Blur’s most popular songs include “Parklife”, “Song 2”, and “The Universal”.

Blur’s success was largely due to their ability to combine a variety of musical styles, as well as their unique approach to British culture and identity. Their music was well-received by both the indie and mainstream music scenes, and they became one of the most popular bands of the 1990s.


R.E.M. was an American rock band formed in Athens, Georgia in 1980. The band was composed of vocalist Michael Stipe, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills, and drummer Bill Berry. R.E.M. was one of the most successful and influential alternative rock bands of the 1990s. They gained immediate success with their debut album, Murmur (1983), which was critically acclaimed and spawned several hit singles, including “Radio Free Europe”.

R.E.M. was known for their unique sound, which combined elements of folk, rock, pop, and punk. Their sound was often characterized by jangly guitars, melodic bass lines, and Stipe’s distinctively emotive vocals. The band’s lyrics often dealt with themes of alienation, despair, and hope.

R.E.M. achieved mainstream success with their fifth album, Out of Time (1991), which spawned the hit singles “Losing My Religion” and “Shiny Happy People”. This success was followed by the release of their sixth album, Automatic for the People (1992), which was certified platinum and earned them two Grammy Awards.

R.E.M.’s unique sound and thoughtful lyrics made them one of the most popular bands of the 1990s. They have sold over 85 million albums worldwide, and have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.


These are just a few of the amazing bands that made the 90s such a memorable decade for music. From grunge to pop-punk to alternative rock, there were a variety of genres and styles that made the 90s such a great decade for music.


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