Second Coming
February 13, 2012 10:16 AM   Subscribe

Stone Roses, Trainspotting and the grunge look: the 90s revival is here (previous)
posted by fearfulsymmetry (211 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite

 
my reaction
posted by The Whelk at 10:17 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Stone Roses, Trainspotting and the grunge look: People who were teenagers in the mid 90s now have influential media jobs, disposable income, and a lack of ideas.
posted by robself at 10:21 AM on February 13, 2012 [38 favorites]


my reaction
posted by swift at 10:22 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


FINALLY
posted by entropicamericana at 10:25 AM on February 13, 2012 [5 favorites]


That is, in fact, a picture of the Stone Roses in 1987.
posted by griphus at 10:26 AM on February 13, 2012 [10 favorites]


My kids are buying flannel shirts, which makes me chuckle. The '90s, esp. early-mid '90s, were a lot of fun!
posted by Mister_A at 10:27 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


She adds: "The decade was all about extremes,

She's right. Man, I hope some extreme bands like Colon do a reunion tour.
posted by howfar at 10:28 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Politics, man. If you're hanging onto a rising balloon, you're presented with a difficult decision - let go before it's too late or hang on and keep getting higher, posing the question: how long can you keep a grip on the rope? They're selling curtains wigs in Woolworths, man. The greatest decade in the history of mankind is over. And as Presuming Ed here has so consistently pointed out, we have failed to smell like teen spirit.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:29 AM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Between the whitewashed walls of Visions Video Bar, a London club, a crush of brothel creepers and flannel shirts throws spry shapes in the air as Nas's NY State of Mind segues deftly into Camp Lo's Luchini. "Tune!" howls a boy in a peaked cap to his girlfriend with an undercut.

what
posted by designbot at 10:30 AM on February 13, 2012 [27 favorites]


But the Pixies got back together years ago.
posted by phong3d at 10:30 AM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Stone Roses, Trainspotting and the grunge look: People who were teenagers in the mid 90s now have influential media jobs, disposable income, and a lack of ideas.

Hm. You're reminding me a little bit about the time when people who were teenagers in the late 60s had influential media jobs, disposable income, and a lack of ideas and bands like the Stone Roses became popular the first time.
posted by The World Famous at 10:31 AM on February 13, 2012 [8 favorites]


Remember when 20 years was a long time?
posted by DU at 10:31 AM on February 13, 2012 [29 favorites]


GenX rules! I hope less obvious bands (such as Camper Van Beethhoven) and phenomena (zines) get some recognition, too.
posted by msalt at 10:33 AM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


I wouldn't mind. I am 90s Britpop through and through. Never big on grunge, but between Blur, Cud, Sleeper, Oasis, Echobelly, Elastica, Boo Radleys, Cornershop, and Stereolab, you have my 20s in playlist format.

I'd love to see the Roses play. Reni was always amazing. Ian Brown danced like he had some sort of mental infirmity. Watching this live clip of Waterfall fills me with equal parts nostalgia and nausea.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 10:33 AM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


previously discussed
posted by The Whelk at 10:33 AM on February 13, 2012


That red Abercrombie flannel from 1993 that I still own is now retro?
posted by lstanley at 10:34 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


There have always been grungy people.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:34 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Welcome, if only because the 80's revival lasted longer than the actual 80's did.
posted by kersplunk at 10:35 AM on February 13, 2012 [14 favorites]


Pretty sure somewhere in this 90's revival is a reaction to 1) the 00's really sucking and 2) The future looking pretty bleak. Can you really blame them?
posted by hellojed at 10:35 AM on February 13, 2012 [5 favorites]


The dream of the 90s is alive in Portland Urban Outfitters
posted by phong3d at 10:39 AM on February 13, 2012 [17 favorites]


I never stopped dressing 'grunge.' I'll be waiting for my modeling contract.
posted by jonmc at 10:39 AM on February 13, 2012 [6 favorites]


Honestly, this is a fairly predictable development. My stepkids have discovered that some of the crap I listened to 20 yrs ago was actually pretty cool, and started picking up cues from it. It happens with every cultural era.
posted by Mister_A at 10:39 AM on February 13, 2012


I missed most of the 90s, for various reasons, so can't comment on the Stone Roses. However, walking down the street, I get the impression that everything is now being revived all the time, anyway. It's kind of reached a weird cultural remix terminal velocity.
posted by carter at 10:40 AM on February 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


(flicks switch inside of aquarium, door opens, enters secret vault filled with flannel and soccer shirts)
posted by Sticherbeast at 10:40 AM on February 13, 2012 [5 favorites]


let me know when people stop wearing carhartt skull caps indoors
posted by nathancaswell at 10:40 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I KNEW IT! Honey, I'm getting the boxes out of storage! Apparently I'm hip again!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 10:41 AM on February 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


The 90s ended? I maintain that they did not; they just got older.
posted by esmerelda_jenkins at 10:43 AM on February 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


baggy pants are dumb. flannel, I don't mind (it is comfortable).

But I always lined up more with the British sounds than the American ones. Boo Radleys for instance. But nothing post 94.
posted by philip-random at 10:44 AM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Man, the Stone Roses look older than Mick Jagger.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:48 AM on February 13, 2012


I am hoping that the 20 years cycle increases to some heretofore unseen speed. So fast that what I wore in the morning is fashionable again by dinner and I only have to go through a few hours each day being uncool. That is the time I will be taking my siesta.
posted by Ad hominem at 10:49 AM on February 13, 2012 [20 favorites]


I always lined up more with the British sounds than the American ones. Boo Radleys for instance. But nothing post 94.

I'm with you on both counts; something happened to music in 94. The 2000s were pretty awesome, though.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:49 AM on February 13, 2012


I guess when the British say "Here" they mean 2009? Because that's when 90s nostalgia peaked.

*crawls away snarling about pete & pete*
posted by Potomac Avenue at 10:53 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


The 20-year cycle has become a 40-year cycle for me. I tried to listen to Screaming Trees last night but listened to MC5 instead.
posted by swift at 10:55 AM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Wait, are you telling me that people stopped wearing flannel?
posted by brennen at 10:56 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Wake me up when Fourth Wave Ska hits, or a band like the Pizzicato 5 can get national airplay.

Fuck, they won't even play Skrillex or Theophilous London on the radio. Whatever the hell this is, it ain't a reprise of the '90s. Music in the '90s isn't characterized by flannel or britpop or gangsta rap. It's characterized by a proliferation of styles and genres and subcultures that not only co-existed, but flourished in each others' presence. Public Enemy and Anthrax. Until they get that mojo going, they're not headed anywhere with this.
posted by Slap*Happy at 10:56 AM on February 13, 2012 [11 favorites]


I can't say I would mind a return to a time when America's biggest national problem was too many blow jobs.
posted by flaterik at 10:57 AM on February 13, 2012 [12 favorites]


DU: "Remember when 20 years was a long time?"

Dude - I was listening to the radio station and heard "Jenny (I've got your number)" on my way to work, and then I heard that it was, indeed, the OLDIES station.

OLDIES.

Jesus fuckin' Christ man. I remember when the oldies was the 50s, and then crept up into 60s, and slowly it held bay for a long while at the 70s. But now? NOW YOU'RE FUCKING WITH MY ERA! I'm not old!!!! DAMNIT! (I'm fat, and out of shape, but... Old? *sigh*)
posted by symbioid at 10:58 AM on February 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


I can't say I would mind a return to a time when America's biggest national problem was too many blow jobs.

Yeah, that was hard on everyone.
posted by swift at 10:59 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I can't wait until the 2020's so we can finally figure out how to pronounce the "00's".
posted by jiawen at 11:01 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I watched Hackers last night and it was glorious.
HACK THE PLANET!!!
posted by timshel at 11:02 AM on February 13, 2012 [13 favorites]


I'm reminded of this Frank Zappa quote:
"It isn't necessary to imagine the world ending in fire or ice. There are two other possibilities: one is paperwork, and the other is nostalgia. Eventually within the next quarter of a century, the nostalgia cycles will be so close together that people will not be able to take a step without being nostalgic for the one they just took. At that point, everything stops. Death by Nostalgia."
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 11:05 AM on February 13, 2012 [50 favorites]


Seeing as the 90's had things like The X-Files and Northern Exposure on TV, I'm all for this (it may finally get rid of all the damn Bachelors' Amazing Race For The Extreme Cake Makeover On The Shore reality shows.).
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:05 AM on February 13, 2012 [5 favorites]


Does this mean I have to pretend to take seriously anything Metallica does again?
posted by shakespeherian at 11:07 AM on February 13, 2012


Empress, that might be the first reality show I reallly want to see...
posted by pupdog at 11:07 AM on February 13, 2012


I never stopped wearing Dr. Martens
posted by narcoleptic at 11:08 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I can't wait until the 2020's so we can finally figure out how to pronounce the "00's".

It's pronounced the "oughts." We "ought" to have voted for a different president. We "ought" to have implemented tighter banking regulations. We "ought" to have not gotten into multiple wars.
posted by ryoshu at 11:09 AM on February 13, 2012 [38 favorites]


Grunge revival - ok; 3-chord light punk/ska revival - no thanks; Madchester revival - oh yes, welcome back. IMHO this was alternative rock at its peak.
posted by kurumi at 11:10 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I can't wait until the 2020's so we can finally figure out how to pronounce the "00's".

I believe "the naughties" is the preferred nomenclature (or it should be.)
posted by Rangeboy at 11:11 AM on February 13, 2012 [5 favorites]


HACK THE PLANET!!!

We have just gotten a wake-up call from the Nintendo Generation.
posted by Artw at 11:13 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm going to whip out Ned's Atomic Dustbin in celebration. If the stupid kids haven't stolen it. Also gonna play the loooong cut of Fool's Gold.
posted by Mister_A at 11:13 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I am hoping that the 20 years cycle increases to some heretofore unseen speed.

Previously
posted by DU at 11:15 AM on February 13, 2012


Definitely prefer the naughties, or even better, the naughts. So those of us who were adults during that decade can tell our children: we started out with the world and left you naught, and all that was spent was for naught.

And regarding nostalgia and the repacking and reselling of grunge: Fuck nostalgia. My hopes in the current generation will be reaffirmed if they stand up en masse and say "I'm not going to cosplay your memories, Dad." and this whole thing fizzles with flannel sitting unloved in the discount bins.
posted by honestcoyote at 11:16 AM on February 13, 2012


Does this mean I have to pretend to take seriously anything Metallica does again?

It's the 90s, not a parallel universe.
posted by griphus at 11:16 AM on February 13, 2012 [10 favorites]


We have just gotten a wake-up call from the Nintendo Generation.

YO THIS IS ZERO COOL!!
posted by timshel at 11:19 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


It's the 90s, not a parallel universe.

What's the difference
posted by shakespeherian at 11:24 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I've been here since the 60s. Trust me, it's all good.
posted by Xoebe at 11:25 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's the 90s, not a parallel universe.

What's the difference


In the parallel universe, Phil Spector has been appointed Secretary of Defense and spends all his time trying to get Alternate Universe Paul McCartney back (he was kidnapped by our Phil Spector following the death of our universe's Macca).
posted by The World Famous at 11:28 AM on February 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


Phil Spector's hair is an alternate universe.
posted by swift at 11:29 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I wonder if we can get Alan Moore to write the universe-jumping Beatles Assassins comic.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:29 AM on February 13, 2012 [6 favorites]


I wonder if we can get Alan Moore to write the universe-jumping Beatles Assassins comic.

For some reason this is putting me in mind of the Paul Mcauley short story where Philip K. Dick, respectable mainstream author of The Grasshopper Lies Heavy, goes to visit Richard Nixon and be given a DEA badge.
posted by Artw at 11:35 AM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Phil Spector's hair is an alternate universe.

Philternate has very subdued hair and pioneered the "shrubbery of audio" production technique. And he wants Macca back so that he can finally release the alternate universe's version of Let It Be, which Philternate refuses to release until Paul McCartney approves all production decisions.
posted by The World Famous at 11:35 AM on February 13, 2012 [7 favorites]


The documentary film of the album's production features three hours of non-stop hugging between the band members.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:37 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Also, in the parallel universe, Metallica are a team of cyborgs built by Doctor Elektra to save the world from the evil New Alliance for Preventing Sound Terror and Ear Ruptures (aka N.A.P.S.T.E.R.), who want to steal all the music in the world.
posted by griphus at 11:37 AM on February 13, 2012 [5 favorites]


And Sean Parker actually looks like Justin Timberlake.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:38 AM on February 13, 2012


Fuck Yeah, let's celebrate with some Boyz II Men
posted by mannequito at 11:41 AM on February 13, 2012


jiawen: I can't wait until the 2020's so we can finally figure out how to pronounce the "00's".

The Naughties
posted by phong3d at 11:42 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


dunno, think people are pushing the '80s look over here.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:44 AM on February 13, 2012


Pronounced "naft-eez."
posted by griphus at 11:44 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Does this mean Radiohead will start making good records again?
posted by BitterOldPunk at 11:45 AM on February 13, 2012 [5 favorites]


In the alternate universe, Eddie and Alex Van Halen never switched instruments, and Alex has become famous for doing whatever the guitar equivalent is to constantly hitting the crash cymbals for no apparent reason.

Andrew Wood is still alive, and he and Mother Love Bone helped catapult the Seattle hair metal scene into the limelight of the early 90s. America never got tired of whiny, high-pitched hair metal vocals, and Queensryche holds the cultural place in the alternate universe that the Pixies hold in ours.
posted by The World Famous at 11:45 AM on February 13, 2012 [7 favorites]


Phil Spector's hair is an alternate universe.

Philternate has very subdued hair and pioneered the "shrubbery of audio" production technique. And he wants Macca back so that he can finally release the alternate universe's version of Let It Be, which Philternate refuses to release until Paul McCartney approves all production decisions.


pretty sure Phil has got a prison buzz cut right now.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:45 AM on February 13, 2012


pretty sure Phil has got a prison buzz cut right now.

He has actually been released in order to head up a top secret x-files sort of paranormal crime unit with Paul McCartney and Kim Gordon. He's still crazy, though.
posted by The World Famous at 11:47 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Finally! An excuse to wear my Inspiral Carpets COOL AS FOOK t-shirt for the first time since the waning days of the first Bush administration!
posted by scody at 11:48 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


...paranormal crime unit with Paul McCartney and Kim Gordon. He's still crazy, though.

Oh my god someone Photoshop that into this right now.
posted by griphus at 11:49 AM on February 13, 2012


John is the darky humorous one, Paul is the mild mannered one, ringo is the spiritual one, and George is the silently raging one. I have this fantastic image in my head of John sighting a rifle through a wormhole at Brian Wilson and making a wisecrack, finger on the trigger-- 'God only knows, eh Bri?'

This one act creates a timeline in which Charles Manson is the de facto frontman of the Beach Boys, feels much more fulfilled and the Tate murders never take place. Roman Polanski remains married to Sharon Tate and doesn't develop into much of a filmmaker.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:51 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


(h/t The Whelk)
posted by shakespeherian at 11:52 AM on February 13, 2012


I was born in 75, and grew up in the middle of bugger all, but I like to think that i had enough exposure to the culture of the 80s to get a general impression of the horribleness of it all, in fashion and music especially. Everything just looked and sounded bad. Weirdly the 80s revival has replicated the former but the music they have unearthed is nothing like the everydfasy music of the decade, which was less about obscure proto-indie & electronica all hair-rock and STA pop crap. Oh, and did you remember how much they liked the 50s back then? 50s shit was HUGE.

Now, when it came round to the 90s, and this overlaps with my teenage years and early 20s so there may be a lot of selection bias here, but it seemed like music really woke up - suddenly there was all this great stuff out there, and it was mainstream. So much of what I listen to now has 90s roots.

(Also I am from the UK and I think we got a better deal out of the 90s in general. Seemingly the 80s never ended for much of America)

So anyway, given my experience of the 80s and 90s, and the filtered revival experience of the 80s, I;m kind of wondering what the 90s revival experience will end up looking like. Is the source material being better is going to translate into better stuff? I have my doubts.
posted by Artw at 11:52 AM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Does this mean Radiohead will start making good records again?

Eventually, but first they'll make a really pretty shitty record.
posted by nathancaswell at 11:53 AM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is the best news I have ever heard.
posted by Navelgazer at 11:53 AM on February 13, 2012


And even the bloody Happy Mondays are back.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:56 AM on February 13, 2012


Maybe that Amiga project that's been staggering on forever will finally come to something...
posted by Artw at 12:00 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


So all the crufty flannels, ragged jeans and other crap we bought down at Goodwill, is now being sold at the high end stores?
posted by P.o.B. at 12:05 PM on February 13, 2012


Seriously, though. Do you guys remember when you could get a whole outfit, including the Chucks, for 3 dollars and you would look really cool?
posted by P.o.B. at 12:07 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


/considers digging out cache of ubiquitous German army shirts.
posted by Artw at 12:09 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


So all the crufty flannels, ragged jeans and other crap we bought down at Goodwill, is now being sold at the high end stores?

All the cob nobblers and lamestains are swingin' on the flippity-flop down at the thriftie, buying wack slacks, fuzz, and plats. It's a real harsh realm.
posted by The World Famous at 12:10 PM on February 13, 2012 [14 favorites]


Seemingly the 80s never ended for much of America

Where I grew up, it took until about 1997, and recent evidence suggests that it was only a temporary remission.
posted by brennen at 12:12 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


something happened to music in 94

That was the peak release year for debut records by all the new bands signed at the behest of the interns and consultants who the big record companies hired to figure out how the hell this Nirvana record had decimated the market for all the hair metal and arena rock cows they'd been milking for so long. This led to the Stone Temple Veruca Supergrass Kula Spin Doctoring of the industry, which turned what had been a genuinely organic and exciting cluster of independent musical movements into just another AOR market segment. After which it was only a matter of time before, you know, Creed and Coldplay.

For music fans in southern Ontario, this transformation is marked by the precise moment CFNY radio started calling itself "The Edge."

As for the '90s revival, I was at a very hip fundraiser party this weekend for my (awesome) local art-house puppet troupe, where mrs g and I were very much part of the small cluster of greying long-time supporters in the far corner, lost in a sea of very hip twentysomethings dressed like someone had put a whole weird range of costume-party themes in a blender.

Anyway, the house band for the night were some earnest young fellas doing a twangy hard rock thing in the general vein of Drive-By Truckers. Their original material was actually pretty solid, but they really brought the house down when they roared through a cover of Nirvana's "Aneurysm." Have to admit, it sounded pretty goddamn good. Onward with the revival!
posted by gompa at 12:22 PM on February 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


I wonder if we can get Alan Moore to write the universe-jumping Beatles Assassins comic.

I think Grant Morrison already used a chunk of that idea in The Invisibles.
posted by FatherDagon at 12:24 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I see what you did there, The World Famous, and I wholeheartedly approve.
posted by gompa at 12:24 PM on February 13, 2012


Man it was a sad day when fairly recently the Army and Navy (and later Camping Shop) where I bought all my combat trousers during the 90s finally shut (and the weird shop opposite that by some miracle had stayed open for at least 20 years selling novelty belt buckles, lighters and samurai swords - but that, as they say, is another story)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:26 PM on February 13, 2012


Oh and I listened to Urban Hymns yesterday... ageing like a fine wine, that one is.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:28 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Oh and the 90s rock by the way as The Last Decade That Wasn't Complete Shit.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:30 PM on February 13, 2012


I read a youtube comment expressing nostalgia for late 90s music recently, and it kind of blew my mind, because I remember it being one of the worst periods for pop music ever. If you don't believe me, look at our most reliable pop music bellwether, the Weird Al polka medley, and compare the track list from 1996 (Beck, REM, Nine Inch Nails) to 1999 (Smash Mouth, Matchbox 20, Third Eye Blind).
posted by speicus at 12:32 PM on February 13, 2012 [8 favorites]


Growing up in the Seattle area in the early 90's was kind of weird. It's kind of odd thinking back on being at the epicenter of popular fashion. Seattle has always had a weird aesthetic when it comes to clothes though, and I don't know if wearing shorts and Birkenstocks year round started here, but Seattlites sure as hell like to maintain that it's fashionably accurate to this day.
posted by P.o.B. at 12:42 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I remember in 1993 I'd get up and putter around our apartment for a bit before heading to campus. I'd put on a baby doll dress with leggings and some clunky black shoes and sit down for coffee with my roommates. We'd put on MTV and I swear the video for Cannonball was on every morning at the same time. We hated it so much we started to love it. On the way up to campus I would shove a Patty Larkin cassette into the deck in my red Hyundai and wish I had a CD player. I could only listen to my new music in my room, unless I copied the discs onto blank tapes for the car, which I never thought about until I was in the car. Mst3k had entered the Mike years. Twin Peaks had come and gone. The best thing on tv was old episodes of Soap. So we played a lot of Civilization on my fancy new CD-rom computer and drank a lot of Molson Red.

2 years later I was a single mom, and a grad student and a new librarian. Except for the X-Files and Harry Potter, the rest of the 90s made little impact on me, culturally speaking. By 2000 I was married, a mom again, done with school and taking a break from library work to tend to my family. I suppose it'd be nice to have a redo of the years I missed, but on the other hand I don't need to monopolize the music scene in our house like my parents did with their 60s stuff. So I guess I'll sit this one out. Besides, I saw the Civil Wars for the first on tv last night and why would I want to warm up Matchbox 20 when I could listen to that awesomeness?

(OK, maybe I would rock a mushroom cut again. But that's IT.)
posted by Biblio at 12:45 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I remember in 1993 I'd get up and putter around our apartment for a bit before heading to campus. I'd put on a baby doll dress with leggings and some clunky black shoes and sit down for coffee with my roommates. We'd put on MTV and I swear the video for Cannonball was on every morning at the same time.

OH MY GOD WE WERE THE SAME PERSON
posted by scody at 12:49 PM on February 13, 2012 [7 favorites]


I swear the video for Cannonball was on every morning at the same time. We hated it so much we started to love it.

Ok. Couple things I just have to get off my chest.

1) I'm 31 so I think I'm allowed to say that the style (definitely) and to a lesser extent the music of the early 90s are kind of over-rated... and granted...
2) Cannonball is probably The Breeders worst song but...
3) THE BREEDERS ARE FUCKING AWESOME AWESOME AWESOME AWESOME TITLE TK IS ONE OF THE BEST RECORDS EVER OK I SAW THEM A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO AND I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE REALLY DEPRESSING BUT THEY BLEW MY SHIT THEY WERE SO TIGHT AND AWESOME AND ADORABLE AND AWESOME
posted by nathancaswell at 12:51 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


and yes I know Title TK came out in the 2000s but like 2/3 of Last Splash was awesome too
posted by nathancaswell at 12:53 PM on February 13, 2012


I'm OK with the 90s coming back as long as I am not forced to have floppy hair.
posted by The World Famous at 12:53 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


PPS I JUST WANNA GET A LONG
I just wanna get a long
I just wanna get along.
posted by nathancaswell at 12:54 PM on February 13, 2012


Mst3k had entered the Mike years.

Must... not... create... massive... derail....
posted by shakespeherian at 12:54 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


the 90s revival is here

All I can say it is beats the 70s revival. *shudder*

though it doesn't seem to have helped my last album's sales none, which decidedly has a pretty 90s sound.
posted by chimaera at 12:55 PM on February 13, 2012


Is this a white nineties revival? It's difficult to say that without it sounding really accusatory, but I'm curious. Like, is it a revival primarily by white people, or maybe a revival primarily of white music, art and fashion from the nineties? I mean, I was a punk rocker of sorts back then, from a very provincial and racist background, so what I knew of cultural production by people of color was, like, almost zero. There was Public Enemy, and that's about it. So I don't even have a really clear idea of what was going on in rap or hip-hop or any other art form where there were many people of color producing it, and fashion wise all I have in my head is a few very early nineties backward-shirt/rasta colors things.

I wonder if Official Nostalgia is predominantly white. Like, when I think of eighties revival stuff I don't remember seeing much actual revival of anything produced by people of color - there's a blog about the fashions on the Cosby show which is pretty good, but that's about it.

I would be totally open to being proved wrong here, or to a supplement of what I know.

There was this moment when I met a group of black high school students (who weren't, you know, friends of friends or anything, just random kids and not even all friends with each other) and I looked at their various fashion choices, and it was obvious to me that the cues about being artistic or a nerd or hip or popular were totally different from the substantially white milieu in which I grew up, but I was not sure how to read those cues. I imagine that there's a whole thing of revival and nostalgia in various communities of color that operates on a different track than Official [White] American Fashion.
posted by Frowner at 12:57 PM on February 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


Most of what I remember about 1994 was driving around in my robin's egg blue '86 Tercel burning out my taped copy of Dookie.

Weird that Cannonball should be mentioned. It came on the radio the other day when I was visiting some old friends in Vancouver. About 5 seconds in we all blurted out a similar sentiment of 'oh God this is shit'. It was cathartic. back in the day I think it would have been a minor breach to even suggest that the Breeders could do any wrong.

It's very clicheed but I do remember an interview with Eddie Vedder expressing his disappointment that the thrift store clothes had suddenly gained popularity - I had gone through the same disappointment when the stupid t-shirts we used to buy went from 0.25 cents to 5 bucks over the course of a very short time as a result of this new trend.

My parents approved of my Doc Martin purchases in high school because they were durable.
posted by jimmythefish at 1:01 PM on February 13, 2012


I wonder if Official Nostalgia is predominantly white.

Most likely, because I think it's a product of whichever cultural hegemony rises to the fore (see robself's comment), which is going to tend to be white folks.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:02 PM on February 13, 2012


Damn. I felt old when the 80s revival came around, but there's nothing like having "your" decade's revival superseded by the revival of the decade in which you first started feeling old, to make you feel really, really...really old.
posted by El Sabor Asiatico at 1:02 PM on February 13, 2012


I'm sitting here at work in my plaid shirt and work boots. Unfortunately I'm 20 years older and I just look like a frumpy middle aged dude rather than an apathetic young un.
posted by Calloused_Foot at 1:04 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Frowner: where I come from, white and black culture is entangled inextricably. Cool black folks like cool white culture and vice versa. 90s rap nostalgia has been stewing for a while, and came back fashion-wise a few years ago. If anything, the 90s hip-hop nostalgia has moved on from flower hats and gumbys to things like Starter jackets, baggy jeans, and tims (weird since 90% of black guys over 40 still dress like that anyway).

Anyway, uh, no. There's symbiotic nostalgia for all things 90s, especially among fans of black culture.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:06 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm sitting here at work in my plaid shirt and work boots. Unfortunately I'm 20 years older and I just look like a frumpy middle aged dude rather than an apathetic young un.

That's not such a bad thing. Just pretend you're Mike Watt.
posted by The World Famous at 1:06 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


All I can say it is beats the 70s revival. *shudder*

The thing about the '70s revival is that it was actually more tasteful and engaging than the actual '70s. They took the decade of polyester leisure suits and feathered mullets, and the Convoy song and the Ford Pinto and unironic John Travolta roles, took it and cleaned it up, ditched the plaids, introduced more blended knit fabrics, scaled back the bellbottoms into "bootcut", and man, it suddenly seemed like a reasonable time in music, fashion and the arts.

On the other hand, legitimately awesome '70s stuff, like Dungeons and Dragons, Star Wars, Jaws, Alien, the Apple II and the Atari 2600 have become "Honorary '80s" nostalgia pieces.
posted by Slap*Happy at 1:07 PM on February 13, 2012


Being a white guy really into hip-hop from the mid 80's onward, I can say without a doubt that popular culture, whether white or black, informs one another. If you managed to get to a Lollapalooza concert in the early 90's, you would have seen all manner of music.

I had gone through the same disappointment when the stupid t-shirts we used to buy went from 0.25 cents to 5 bucks over the course of a very short time as a result of this new trend.

I remember that. Everyone was like "Wait, wha? This crap is supposed to be thrifty and 'good' will!" And then you had to just go on Wednesdays because that was the cheap sale day.
posted by P.o.B. at 1:07 PM on February 13, 2012


^of all races
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:07 PM on February 13, 2012


I'm OK with the 90s coming back as long as I am not forced to have floppy hair.

I wish I still had hair...
posted by Sourisnoire at 1:08 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Finally! An excuse to wear my Inspiral Carpets COOL AS FOOK t-shirt for the first time since the waning days of the first Bush administration!

Inspiral Carpets are reformed, as well as the others. They're playing support to Happy Mondays at a few shows. I'm tempted to go, but long experience tells me that the Mondays live are only tolerable if you are really fucking high. And I wouldn't be. And also it's like £40. So...
posted by Infinite Jest at 1:08 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


of all races

Culture, or at Lollapalooza? Yeah, to the former, not that I recall to the latter. I remember mostly a sea of white people at the concert. But I didn't mind being one of five people who could recognize the members of The Pharcyde or what the Beastie Boys DJ looked like.
posted by P.o.B. at 1:13 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


(Oh, to clarify - what I meant was not "was there media produced by artists of color during the nineties which one might theoretically revive?" but rather "what is the content of the actually existing nineties revival and how does this relate to race?")
posted by Frowner at 1:13 PM on February 13, 2012


A little while ago my seven-year-old wanted to buy a department store flannel shirt because "flannel shirts are cool." I rolled my eyes and bought it, muttering something about commercialism and thrift stores and I-was-wearing-the-real-deal-before-you-were-born and what-do-you-know-about-cool.

This morning I dressed him in that and a thermal and some knock-off Vans and suddenly he looked just like all the boys I had crushes on when I was a teenager and it was ADORABLE. Now I want to buy him more flannel shirts.

Of course, my generation's feelings of nostalgia for a time when our cohort's biggest problem was ennui and our lives were drawn in the sharp simple lines of teenage / twenty-something angst is the reason why our corporate overlords think now is a good time to rehash 90s styles. I'm totally being exploited.

But, you know, WHATEVER. Anything to drive out the 80s rehash dreck.
posted by BlueJae at 1:14 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Being a white guy really into hip-hop from the mid 80's onward, I can say without a doubt that popular culture, whether white or black, informs one another.

A simple glance or two at the hipster glasses that athletes are wearing these days confirms your theory.
posted by nathancaswell at 1:14 PM on February 13, 2012


Also, meeting ?uestlove in the middle of thousands of people while no one gave him a second look was kind of a cool experience.
posted by P.o.B. at 1:15 PM on February 13, 2012


Yeah, not so much a tough theory to prove.
posted by P.o.B. at 1:16 PM on February 13, 2012


I read a youtube comment expressing nostalgia for late 90s music recently, and it kind of blew my mind, because I remember it being one of the worst periods for pop music ever.

Late 90s were amazing (for certain types of music, anyway): 69 Love Songs, Deserters Songs, In the Airplane Over the Sea, Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space, The Soft Bulletin, Mezzanine, Electro-Shock Blues, I See a Darkness, Summerteeth, Mogwai Young Team, Terror Twilight, The Boatman's Call, OK Computer, Vanishing Point...and that's missing out hiphop and electronica and heavier stuff, because I'm not too familiar with those genres (but Chemical Bros, Daft Punk, Mos Def, Jay-Z, Dre etc etc). YMMV, obviously, but for me 97-99 are some of the best years of my adult life.
posted by Infinite Jest at 1:20 PM on February 13, 2012 [8 favorites]


<zoidberg>Hooray!</zoidberg>

The nineties were awesome, I don't care what the haters say. Soundgarden, Jane's Addiction, Primus, Sugar, Failure, Nine Inch Nails, Prong, so many others, man oh man... musically the 90s (especially the early 90s) kicked so much ass after the 80's.

(Honestly not intended as a 'your favorite X sucks' comment... I just have a lot of very fond memories of the early 90s, and the music figures pretty heavily into most of them. Your favorite band does not suck, and neither does mine. )
posted by usonian at 1:22 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Bring back 90s fashion all you want, but just don't get rid of yoga pants.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:23 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Damn. I felt old when the 80s revival came around, but there's nothing like having "your" decade's revival superseded by the revival of the decade in which you first started feeling old, to make you feel really, really...really old.

That's what I felt upon seeing this... "damn, I was too old for the '90s the first time around, now I have to live through it again?"
posted by Daily Alice at 1:25 PM on February 13, 2012


Rangeboy: "I believe "the naughties" is the preferred nomenclature (or it should be.)"

Personally, I'm still hoping we settle on the Oh-Oh's. As in "Uh-oh, what did we do there?"
posted by jiawen at 1:27 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


(Oh, to clarify - what I meant was not "was there media produced by artists of color during the nineties which one might theoretically revive?" but rather "what is the content of the actually existing nineties revival and how does this relate to race?")

While it's not as overt as LET'S WEAR FLANNEL AGAIN, electronic music outside of EDM -- which is a ridiculously broad quasi-category but bear with me -- is really, really steeped in 90s hip-hop and R&B production. There's a lot of stock in falsetto harmonies, simple synths, and other stuff basically invented in the 80s, popularized with Michael Jackson, and then hitting its apex in the 90s. The actual music is being produced (mostly) by white people, but the on-the-sleeve influences were predominantly produced by people of color.
posted by griphus at 1:27 PM on February 13, 2012


I'm waiting to hear back from a friend who I made a suggestion to recently. He used to be in a punk band and opened up for Nirvana a few times, long long ago. He lives in Australia these days, and I talk to his wife often. I was surprised they hadn't seen Portlandia and I told them to watch it. I'm curious how that will go over.
posted by P.o.B. at 1:29 PM on February 13, 2012


is it a revival primarily by white people, or maybe a revival primarily of white music, art and fashion from the nineties?

Pretty broad brush you've got there, good luck with fitting the irish-scots diaspora of trainspotting into that. Me ? I'm proud to see these people remembered, without trainspotting (the book) - the woeful west granton estate would exist as recorded by one photographer - who happened to be passing on a bus at the time, such was the level of engagement.
posted by sgt.serenity at 1:38 PM on February 13, 2012


Ha! They've rewritten it. The original version said that grunge was invented by someone called Marc Jacobs, whoever he might be. What's wrong with fashion people, eh?
posted by Grangousier at 1:39 PM on February 13, 2012


Pretty broad brush you've got there, good luck with fitting the irish-scots diaspora of trainspotting into that.

See, it's really interesting that simply bringing up the question of whiteness is seen as accusatory - IME, that's one of the things that, like, renders it very difficult to ask questions about race and cultural production. . Also, are you really coming back with "but [white ethnic group] isn't white?" There is nothing in saying 'white people exist as a racial category that has meaning' which precludes variations or hierarchies within whiteness.
posted by Frowner at 1:43 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Race is an artificial concept.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:46 PM on February 13, 2012


I really think you're shoehorning race into this discussion Frowner. 90s Nostalgia (and all american nostalgia movements) deals with feelings by all races for cultures that existed as they did--as distinct but complexly mingled memes. This isn't a white thing about white culture, or a white thing about white and black culture. It's a black thing, you wouldn't understand! (haha meme) Now where's my Malcolm X hat? Homey dont play that
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:50 PM on February 13, 2012


ZING!
posted by griphus at 1:51 PM on February 13, 2012


I'm OK with the 90s coming back as long as I am not forced to have floppy hair.

One great thing about Trainspotting - Ewan McGregor made it okay to just buzzcut your hair off entirely, something that I've stuck with ever since and have been thankful for as an unruly-hair-haver.
posted by Artw at 1:51 PM on February 13, 2012


(dammit that was in response to the "race is an artificial concept" nonsense.)
posted by griphus at 1:51 PM on February 13, 2012


I remember mostly a sea of white people....But I didn't mind being one of five people who could recognize the members of The Pharcyde or what the Beastie Boys DJ looked like.

It was A Tribe Called Quest the year they had the Beasties, not Pharcyde. And I can confirm that they, as well as George Clinton & The P-Funk All-Stars got many alterna-whiteys bouncing.

Deserters Songs

Good album, but See You On The Other Side was so superior to this one, don't even get me started.

Also plaid flannel shirts: they have been back since 2005 at least; that's when I was seeing cool kids wearing plaid flannel shirts and goose down puffy coats with fur-line hoods in Tokyo. Then I moved to Vancouver, where it's kinda hard to tell because people have always worn this stuff here and always will.
posted by Hoopo at 2:08 PM on February 13, 2012


It was A Tribe Called Quest the year they had the Beasties, not Pharcyde.

Nope, in '94 all three were there.
posted by P.o.B. at 2:18 PM on February 13, 2012


And the Smashing Pumpkins were obnoxious about the fact that the Beastie Boys stole the show.
posted by P.o.B. at 2:19 PM on February 13, 2012


Nobody agrees on the exact point at which Rap started to suck but anyone who places it later than the 90s is a filthy liar.
posted by Artw at 2:21 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I belong to the Blank Generation
I can take it or leave it each time
I belong to the ______ Generation
And I can take it or leave it each time
posted by Ron Thanagar at 2:25 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Nope, in '94 all three were there.

Holy crap, they were on the second stage! and I missed it! But thankfully also missed the Fu-Schnickens! Who were also there apparently!

the Beastie Boys stole the show

Man did they ever...they spent more time in the air than on the stage.
posted by Hoopo at 2:31 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Several org's named the Roses' debut album THE BEST DAMNED BRITISH ALBUM EVER in 2006.

Um. Well. Didn't realize nostalgia worked that fast. Anyway, best wishes on that world tour.
posted by Twang at 2:32 PM on February 13, 2012


I watched Hackers last night and it was glorious.
HACK THE PLANET!!!
Hey, so did I! Oddly enough, during the party scene I mused aloud about whether the styles seen there would ever come back again.

Also, if you want some excellent mid-90s nostalgia tunes, in a variety of genres, play GTA: San Andreas for a while and play the radio while driving.
posted by epersonae at 2:32 PM on February 13, 2012


> Nobody agrees on the exact point at which Rap started to suck but anyone who places it later than the 90s is a filthy liar.

Mid 1993 it was pretty much obvious that the hip hop movement had run aground, even if some acts were vital.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:32 PM on February 13, 2012


Nobody agrees on the exact point at which Rap started to suck but anyone who places it later than the 90s is a filthy liar.

This is the hip-hop equivalent of "rock and roll peaked with Animals."
posted by griphus at 2:33 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


All I can say it is beats the 70s revival. *shudder*

They have been showing repeats of Top Of The Pops from 76 and 77 recently and oh boy was I surprised at the ratio of bearable to goddamn awful, they'll be one decent act/song - last one I saw was Thin Lizzy - (two if you are lucky) and the rest will be almost unlistenable... I'm wondering if it will be the same when it gets into my era (basically 79 onwards) but I suspect a lot of raw output of anything at any time without the benefit of nostalgia/revival filters will be equally as bad bad.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:34 PM on February 13, 2012


> This is the hip-hop equivalent of "rock and roll peaked with Animals."

Nope. Rock and Roll died with Bad Company.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:37 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Count me in as waiting for the arrival of fourth wave ska. Then again, it could end up being all bro-centered again. (damn you, late Bosstones!)

Damn it. I'm off to listen to Slapstick and Skankin' Pickle.
posted by Ghidorah at 2:38 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Holy crap, they were on the second stage!

You might not have missed them Hoopo. It wasn't uncommon for the lineup to chang from city to city.

Mid 1993

Nahh, it was in the mid-late '90's when Master P decided to embrace his southern roots and switch his sound to Crunk/Dirty South style. Which opened the floodgates for all manner of garbage to spread through hip-hop. For every great Ludicrous, Outkast, and Goodie Mob coming out around then you had five or six other garbage rappers making a splash. Master P isn't bad in and of himself, very smart entrepreneur to boot, but you can chart the devastation his appeal wrought by looking at the underground grew exponentially around that time.
posted by P.o.B. at 2:39 PM on February 13, 2012


Mid 1993 it was pretty much obvious that the hip hop movement had run aground, even if some acts were vital.

What? That is crazy. 1993 was a banner year, with Enter the 36 Chambers, 93 til Infinity, Return of the Boom Bap, Midnight Marauders, Buhloone Mindstate, Doggystyle, yaddayaddayadda. In 1993 hip hop was on the ascent. I mean, Illmatic wasn't even out yet!
posted by Hoopo at 2:50 PM on February 13, 2012 [6 favorites]


Also, around the mid to late 90's was when rappers, mostly spurred on by people like Biggie, Nas, and Jay, started: dressing in three piece suits, hanging out on yachts (I'm on a boat!), and driving Bentlys. There is always going to be some distance between artist and audience, but if you want to talk about alienating yourself from your listners to build a mystique, that would be a great place to look.
Grunge and hip-hop back then operated almost in the same way that there were plenty of artists who represented themselves as part of the audience, rather than as something for the audience to behold in awe.
posted by P.o.B. at 2:58 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Apropos of The Stone Roses...

My band (all pushing 40) was doing some recording yesterday and we have this jangly pop song we were trying to get down. I couldn't get the guitar sound right, it just sounded like muddy punk, when someone said "hey why don't you get the old Rickey out?" I hadn't played it in years, the Rickenbacker 320 is a temperamental, underpowered guitar, but damn if it didn't feel good to play. Hollow with a floating bridge, your whole body vibrates when you strum it and the sound shimmers. It takes a lot of over drive to make it rock, but there remains a lot of coolness in that axe.

The Stone Roses were really an eighties thing, the whole premise of this article is a bit flawed. But one of my favorite things about pop culture of that era was watching bands slinging those beautiful round guitars with the big shiny "R" at the bridge.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 3:04 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Grunge and Madchester Britpop - awesome. But I am always nostalgic for the early nineties New Jack Swing sound (Me and Rich, might be the only ones though?). I'd love to see some more of that make it back into the mainstream. That all three of these could exist at the same time was what the early 90s were about for me.
posted by marylynn at 3:08 PM on February 13, 2012


It all means nothing when D. Boon is still dead.
posted by davebush at 3:13 PM on February 13, 2012


Biblio/scody/me = all the same person, and artw is my age. GET OFF MY LAWN!

p.s. I still wear Doc Marten mary janes every day and I am wearing flannel RIGHT NOW!
posted by bitter-girl.com at 3:23 PM on February 13, 2012


Scody and I were possibly the same person...if she lived in Ithaca, NY and had a calico cat who also hated Cannonball.

I will add some Breeders to my Pandora mix and see if my world gets rocked. I suspect my favorite singer (from 1990 on) will remain in first place, but we'll see. Jonatha, you're on notice!
posted by Biblio at 3:24 PM on February 13, 2012


Nahh, it was in the mid-late '90's when Master P decided to embrace his southern roots and switch his sound to Crunk/Dirty South style. Which opened the floodgates for all manner of garbage to spread through hip-hop.

Speaking as somebody who worked in record store from the mid to late 90s, the one of the highlights of new release Tuesdays was to see what new horrible monstrosity Pen & Pixel was going to squeeze out that week.
posted by entropicamericana at 3:26 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Does this mean I have to pretend to take seriously anything Metallica does again?

If there was a new Monty Python type of show a skit about someone taking Metallica seriously would be hilarious.
posted by juiceCake at 3:34 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Scody and I were possibly the same person...if she lived in Ithaca, NY and had a calico cat who also hated Cannonball.

Alas, no. Iowa City, and a roommate's orange tabby (Chet) whose opinion regarding the Breeders remains a mystery.
posted by scody at 3:36 PM on February 13, 2012


I still think Kool Keith's send-up of that style beats all. Although some of those Pen & Pixel covers definitely blurred the line so much it was hard to tell if they were in on the joke.

A buddy of mine once had to do a website promoting Lil Jon and a few other crunk artists for a record label. I have never laughed so hard as we used to while going through the materials the label provided and drinking while putting the site together. I recall the loading/"splash" page or whatever it's called being nothing but a jewel encrusted goblet on a black background, that when you click on it Lil John goes "EEEEEEEEEEEEYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEEAH!"
posted by Hoopo at 3:40 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Not only are the 90s making a comeback, the retro 70s nostalgia of the 1990s is also making a comeback.

Picture me chillin on a naugahyde couch under a discoball with flannel duds, a gold necklace around my neck (with a lil teaspoon) while listening to Pearl Jam and shooting black tar heroin.
posted by Renoroc at 3:40 PM on February 13, 2012


I will add some Breeders to my Pandora mix

Off You, Sinister Foxx, No Aloha, I Just Wanna Get Along, Hag, Do You Love Me Now, Lime House
posted by nathancaswell at 3:41 PM on February 13, 2012


horrible monstrosity Pen & Pixel

Louis Theroux flashback...
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 5:04 PM on February 13, 2012


When they get around to getting nostalgic for the 2000s, what is that going to look like? I don't feel like there was a real style that could be associated with the 2000s, but maybe that's just because I was too old to notice and it passed under my radar.
posted by willnot at 5:23 PM on February 13, 2012


starting with (ugh) trucker hats, black skinny jeans, neon fake ray bans, ray bans, kanye shutter shades, v-neck white t-shirts, vans and other fake slip ons, cosby sweaters, t-shirts with animals on them, gems and crystals, feathers in the hair, psychedelic geometric patterns particularly triangles and pyramids, black plastic chunky glasses, any fucking thing that has to do with the french new wave / anna karina, now moving into carhartts, wearing two collared shirts at once, work boots, i think suits are about to come back in a big way
posted by nathancaswell at 5:28 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


whoops I took us all the way to the 2010s
posted by nathancaswell at 5:29 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


As I was saying on Twitter earlier, there's very little going on in music and fashion right now that you couldn't drop back into the 90s and people wouldn't find it out of place, except maybe thinking it was a little dated.
posted by Artw at 5:55 PM on February 13, 2012


Count me in as waiting for the arrival of fourth wave ska. Then again, it could end up being all bro-centered again. (damn you, late Bosstones!)

Damn it. I'm off to listen to Slapstick and Skankin' Pickle.


Oh yes please. I know for a fact I still have my black-and-white checkered tights, and there's a pretty good chance I can dig up the skinny tie I stole from my father. The porkpie hat is, alas, long gone though.

I went through a phase where I decided I hated everything I used to listen to, and got rid of most of my third wave ska CDs. Trying to talk myself out of repurchasing a lot of them, all of a sudden...
posted by skycrashesdown at 6:14 PM on February 13, 2012


That's great news, I'm firing up the jazz triphop and ambient dnb production!
posted by yoHighness at 6:51 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


PS I threw out the S1000 and am doing it in Logic this time so BRB
posted by yoHighness at 6:53 PM on February 13, 2012


I liked how in the 00s a lot of music sounded like it came from the British 60s. And now music sounds like its from The British 90s.
posted by The Whelk at 7:22 PM on February 13, 2012


No, the Hipsters have their own look. Skinny jeans and colorful fedoras and Elvis Costello Glasses being mandatory rather than just for people with vision defects and a stunning lack of panache. Plus, the one or two real nerd subcultures, the Steampunks and the Rivetheads*, have their own style that's evolved from goth and subgenius, but not a clean fit with them. In the mainstream, fetish boots and shoes are everyday wear for women, Uggs and Ballerina flats (worn with tights) are the culturally accepted backlash, and guys have adopted new style extra long basketball shorts and cargo shorts and pink polo shorts oh god kill me now the pink polo shirts no I'm not wearing one even for you.

(*I have a four year old Carhartt barn jacket that's frayed and worn. This makes me a rivet-head. Or too cheap and lazy to break in a new coat. In the '90s, I had a tan trench-coat with license plates bolted to the hem, and a padlocked chain through the epaulette on one shoulder, a plastic banana harmonica hanging from a paracord lanyard off the other. I was never without a butane pencil-sized soldering iron/torch, a copy of the Pocket Ref, or a Gerber multi-tool, and I had a Victorinox pocket watch in a belt holster. Oh, God, why? It seemed like a good idea at the time... I was a trend-setter. Or just insane. Hard to tell which sometimes. The hawaiian shirts lean towards insane.)
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:38 PM on February 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


After about 1992, the 90s sucked. Big biz bought out all of the indie record companies and spewed the result into the "alternative" bin of the mall record stores. As for fashion, it was pretty easy to see that a bunch of west coasters listened to too much of their parent stupid hippy records as they grew up on Dead Kennedys. If I have to live through another regurgitation of the 60s, I'll murder someone.
posted by readyfreddy at 8:18 PM on February 13, 2012


A few months ago a friend and I were wandering around St Kilda, going to a concert. We started laughing about the difference between the way young women dressed then versus how they dress now. Back then it was Doc Martens or blocky shoes, shapeless pants or long skirts, long-sleeved tops, big jackets, and hoodies. You saw nothing. Nothing! Maybe some dark lipstick. The same age group today shows a comparatively huge amount of skin. Not judging, just funny how things change.

We reflected upon how it must have felt to be the parents of these young 90s women as they watched them going out into the night in their layers and layers of obfuscating clothes: "I fully support you in your rebellion against fashion norms, sweetheart!"
posted by Ritchie at 8:25 PM on February 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


and guys have adopted new style extra long basketball shorts and cargo shorts and pink polo shorts

pix or it didn't happen.
posted by telstar at 9:20 PM on February 13, 2012


"I fully support you in your rebellion against fashion norms, sweetheart!"

I had one friend in High School from a pretty seriously catholic family in the 90s who were actually totally fine with thier daughter's adoption of the goth look. She covered up more, got interested in the lives of saints, and really liked Latin masses.
posted by The Whelk at 9:31 PM on February 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


We started laughing about the difference between the way young women dressed then versus how they dress now. Back then it was Doc Martens or blocky shoes, shapeless pants or long skirts, long-sleeved tops, big jackets, and hoodies. You saw nothing. Nothing! Maybe some dark lipstick. The same age group today shows a comparatively huge amount of skin. Not judging, just funny how things change.

Yeah, that's what I was getting at with my comment about yoga pants above. I went back to my old alma mater last week, and it was simply amazing the kinds of clothes the females students were wearing. Indeed, the tights are so tight now that yoga pants seem kind of conservative. Not only that, thanks to yoga, women (and men) are in much better shape now than they were 20 years ago.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:42 PM on February 13, 2012


After about 1992, the 90s sucked. Big biz bought out all of the indie record companies and spewed the result into the "alternative" bin of the mall record stores.

All of them? Shoot, I have a bunch of friends whose checks must've gotten lost in the mail.
posted by entropicamericana at 10:36 PM on February 13, 2012


biblio.scody.bitter-girl. and me. definitely the same person.

I was even in Iowa with scody (although a little over an hour west, in the Metropolitan Hub known as Grinnell).
posted by miss tea at 4:22 AM on February 14, 2012


I totally missed the nineties, being nine at its peak, but I am wholly incapable of recognizing grunge as a style. Is grunge just where people dress normally? Because when I look at that Stone Roses picture I notice nothing out of the ordinary, save for maybe that polka-dotty shirt. The other three people just look like people wearing neutral clothes and looking like people.
posted by Rory Marinich at 6:15 AM on February 14, 2012


The other three people just look like people wearing neutral clothes and looking like people.

How to explain grunge. OK. For twenty years or so, before the arrival of Grunge, to be taken seriously as a mainstream pop or rock and roll act you had to dress in women's clothing or in a superhero uniform or like a male model. You needed a costume of some kind.

In Seattle, in the late '80s, early '90s, you could be a rock and roller wearing comfortable jeans, sensible shoes, flannel shirts and second-hand concert t-shirts. Since people in Seattle that were doing hard rock and heavy metal and power pop and electric folk were all dressed the same - which is to say, like regular people on their day off - they all got slapped with the "Grunge" label. Musically, the only thing really linking them is an ethos of sincerity - honest lyrics about everyday emotions or unusual people and situations; a serious approach to the music and each musician's part in it. No "party all night" or "I wanna rock" or "Baby I'll love you forever" trite rubbish, no self-indulgent guitar noodling or drum armageddon during solos - it had to fit in with the rest of the music. Other than that, it was all over the map.

Grunge wasn't a uniform, it was just a fashion that was really, really, really easy to do. Jeans? T-shirt? Flannel shirt? Chucks? Grunge. Chinos? Untucked Oxford shirt? Solid color T? Doc Martens? Grunge. You didn't need to be handsome or stylish to pull it off. Just kind of lazy.

Britpop was this Pacific Northwest vibe transplanted into Manchester, England... they kept the sincerity, but allowed themselves a little more fashion extravagance. Since the Red Hot Chili Peppers were running around wearing only socks or pants made from teddy bears, this was OK (even though they're not even from Seattle and people look at you funny if you try to call them grunge.)

What's really amazing is that the music industry was shocked and terrified that ordinary looking people singing musically and emotionally complex songs were suddenly megastars. It completely freaked them out, and still does to this day.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:00 AM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


> Britpop was this Pacific Northwest vibe transplanted into Manchester, England..

No way, dude.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:08 AM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Huh! That sounds really neat and I am totally with that. I always associate grunge with Nirvana, because that's the only band I know I listen to that is sometimes called grunge (though I've been told that they're not actually grunge?), and possibly I listen to other grunge music and just haven't realized it.

Tell me more about this electric folk! (Or I'll Google it if you're busy.)
posted by Rory Marinich at 7:09 AM on February 14, 2012


Britpop was a San Francisco rave vibe (remember ToonTown? Burning Man on the beach?) transplanted to Manchester.
posted by msalt at 7:47 AM on February 14, 2012


Britpop was this Pacific Northwest vibe transplanted into Manchester, England.

Britpop was a San Francisco rave vibe (remember ToonTown? Burning Man on the beach?) transplanted to Manchester.

You people are making me cry. Britpop was the recasting of classic British (hence the "Brit" in the name) pop in a post-punk, post-Madchester vibe. It was an amalgam, above all, of a couple of decades of classic British guitar pop -- most obviously the Beatles, the Kinks, and the Small Faces from the '60s; Bowie from the '70s; and the Smiths from the '80s. The Stone Roses were like the ur-Britpop band, but that doesn't mean that Manchester was itself a Britpop scene or movement, only that the Roses' influence was massive.
posted by scody at 8:40 AM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Oh, and chronologically, the Manchester scene (both musically and as a dance/rave scene) peaked around 1989 or 1990. Britpop's day was really about 1992-97, with its peak right around 1995. So Britpop flowed out of Madchester in a cultural sense (and even geographically, as Oasis was formed in Manchester), and it also led into the whole "baggy" scene. Baggy was definitely a mix of dance- and house-influenced guitar music, and definitely is a more direct continuation of the classic "Manchester" sound (compare similarities between the Charlatans and the High to the Stone Roses and Inspiral Carpets, for example).

Manchester (specifically the Roses) also had a certain limited influence on shoegaze (bands like Ride, Lush, Slowdive, etc.), but shoegaze's whole noisy, droning neo-psychedelia comes more from Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins, etc. Of all the British music scenes of the '90s, shoegaze is the one that probably was being most heavily influenced by contemporary American music, because you also hear the influence of Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr.
posted by scody at 8:56 AM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Guh! The second sentence in the previous comment should read: So Britpop flowed out of Madchester in a cultural sense (and even geographically, as Oasis was formed in Manchester), and Madchester [not "it", i.e., Britpop] also led into the whole "baggy" scene. Serves me right for trying to type my thesis, "Scody's Favorite British Music of College and Grad School SERIOUSLY THIS IS IMPORTANT," without having had my morning cup of tea.
posted by scody at 9:01 AM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


As I was saying on Twitter earlier, there's very little going on in music and fashion right now that you couldn't drop back into the 90s and people wouldn't find it out of place, except maybe thinking it was a little dated.

I think they would be surprised at how processed sounding mainstream music is now - back then this was the exception not the norm.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:33 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh and Madchester having some sort of American influence (bar the house scene which had crossed the Atlantic years before) is madness. About the closest it got was Jamaica, both musically and drug wise.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:35 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


omigod you guys... i'm starting to think the world really did end in 1999
posted by fetamelter at 9:37 AM on February 14, 2012


scody and fearfulsymmetry got it first, but:

Madchester: two things really. The dance side, e.g. Happy Mondays, 808 State, Guy Called Gerald. Influenced by the early Ibiza rave scene and the huge amounts of ecstasy that Happy Mondays were bringing into Manchester from Ibiza.

The guitar pop/rock side which got lumped in with the dance side by rockist journalists: Happy Mondays (yeah, they were both), the Stone Roses, Inspiral Carpets, Charlatans. Much more traditional, influenced by classic stuff like the Byrds, Simon and Garfunkel. This was sorta second wave Madchester to my mind, the dance stuff was first, and more underground.

Then when it went seriously massive the two connected and you had Happy Mondays and late period Stone Roses playing a mix of rock/dance, followed by a whole lot of bandwagon jumpers (Northside, Paris Angels, dance-era Soup Dragons, the Farm, early Blur).

Then it all died around the time people started getting post-rave comedowns and realised life couldn't actually be 3AM in the Hacienda forever, then grunge took over. Then there was the New Wave of New Wave (Elastica, Suede) which mutated into Britpop (Beatles, Kinks, Bowie) and Blur and Oasis became involved.
posted by Infinite Jest at 9:44 AM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Because when I look at that Stone Roses picture I notice nothing out of the ordinary, save for maybe that polka-dotty shirt. The other three people just look like people wearing neutral clothes and looking like people.

The Stone Roses weren't grunge, though. They were psychedelic classic pop that picked up dance influences.

Here are some more contemporary pics: one; two, three
posted by Infinite Jest at 9:47 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


> Happy Mondays (yeah, they were both)

To be fair, The Mondays' guitarist was pretty terrible and there just to lend rock authenticity. On most of the recorded tracks the guitar riffs are looped and sequenced.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:49 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Here are some more contemporary pics

Hey! That's my dorm room! What were you doing in my dorm room?!

The dance side, e.g. Happy Mondays, 808 State, Guy Called Gerald

Oh, blessed 808 State! I'm now going to listen to the Stone Roses remixes on the way to work.
posted by scody at 9:52 AM on February 14, 2012


I was in Ibiza during the off season to visit a friend who lived there (during the off season the island is not at all busy). I've never had so many people try to sell me drugs.

The Stone Roses are my new not aged gracefully reference.
posted by juiceCake at 10:06 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


808 State are fucking great!
posted by Artw at 10:08 AM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


oh, and just one more AND ANOTHER THING moment: I realize in horror -- horror, I tell you -- that I have forgotten to mention the Paul Weller connection to Britpop, most notably the influence of the Jam (and, more generally, the mod revival of the late '70s and early '80s; lots of the bands associated with Manchester and Britpop had been mods or scooterboys as kids) and of his early solo stuff, particularly his second album, Wild Wood. I've always said that the guitar break alone in Hung Up (which itself is all, Hello, George Harrison) gave Oasis a couple of years' worth of mileage. It's no accident that Weller and various Britpop musicians (e.g., Noel Gallagher, Graham Coxon, etc.) have wound up working together pretty frequently over the years.

Okay, I really am done.

For now.

posted by scody at 10:22 AM on February 14, 2012


Teenage Fanclub doesn't get enough love.
posted by entropicamericana at 10:25 AM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


The hideousness of anything Brit Pop is directly proportional to the level of connection to The Jam.
posted by Artw at 10:26 AM on February 14, 2012


The hideousness of anything Brit Pop is directly proportional to the level of connection to The Jam.

Flagged for making Ocean Colour Scene wet their pants like the spineless pseudo-authentic Weller-noshing cod-mod-revivalists they are.
posted by howfar at 10:45 AM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


TBH of all the things going on in British music at the time most of the best stuff was outside of the "Brit pop" remit anyway.
posted by Artw at 10:47 AM on February 14, 2012


In 94/95/96 I lived in small towns in rural Japan, far removed from any sort of pop culture, although there was an independent record store in the provincial capital about an hour away by train that sold NME (I used to look at the gig listings and get depressed). As a result, I actually regressed in my musical tastes, and listened to easily available dreck such as Foo Fighters and Oasis (What's the Story Morning Glory).

This was also the era before Internet (email was the big new thing) and mass storage, so I had to haul around my music collection of CDs and their crappy little plastic cases.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:25 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


One of my most long-lasting memories of those days, though, was listing to Stereolab's Mars Audiac Quintet in the old Kimpo Airport outside of Seoul while watching the red, red sun set in the murky orange haze.

Or listening to One Dove while biking along the deserted Japan Sea Coast on the Noto Peninsula.

If anyone has a digital copy of anything the Unmen (the electronic band from the UK) did back then, I would be very, very happy to hear from you via MeMail.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:29 PM on February 14, 2012


Are we far enough in thread to blatantly plug my blog where I've been talking about 90s music? Yeah, I think so...
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:46 PM on February 14, 2012


my blog where I've been talking about 90s music

OH MY GOD VIC REEVES + THE WONDERSTUFF I LOVE YOU I LOVE YOU *forces self not to start hysterically reciting Big Night Out one-liners*
posted by scody at 3:49 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Man, the Stone Roses look older than Mick Jagger.

But combined they're only a tenth as old looking as Mark E Smith.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:00 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Also: it seems like we've just reached the late 80s revival here. Last weekend I saw two young women wearing shortish patterned / floral dresses with Doc Martens boots.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:04 PM on February 14, 2012


JJJ radio going national in the early 90's rescued me from the 50's and 60's (I blame American Graffitti and Woodstock/The Big Chill for that, although I still love all the songs I discovered during that phase) and re-introduced me to alternative* music. A hatred of synthesizers was always going to make the 80's difficult so instead of falling back on ZZZ like I should have (too much early hiphop - I just don't like it) I threw myself into the past.

The 90's was too excellent to resist (if one avoided the top 40 scene). So much good music. And once I discovered that I was able to find all the excellent alternative stuff from the 70's and 80's that I'd mostly missed.

I have a (mostly) Australian 90's mix that I'm happy to pass on - make my envelope golden if you're interested.



*I know alternative is a word that has been abused badly but I'm talking mostly non-top 40 stuff when I refer to it. I know there are exceptions!
posted by h00py at 4:22 AM on February 15, 2012


48 Pictures That Perfectly Capture the 90's.
posted by usonian at 12:58 PM on February 22, 2012


48 Pictures That Perfectly Capture the 90's.

Most of those capture the breif interlude between the 80's and 90's. By 1993, wearing neon would cause one to receive a well deserved wedgie by someone in flannel, torn jeans, Doc Martins, and a longshoremans cap in the summer.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 8:10 AM on February 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


48 Pictures That Perfectly Capture
everything that was ugly about
the 90's.
posted by philip-random at 9:41 AM on February 23, 2012


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