Nineties alt-rock as a genre covers sounds that range from unlistenable power pop to wrist-slitting, misery-inducing grunge. It's a general term that means not much. Look at a band like Lit. They play punky pop, and it's the kind of rock you can jump up and down and softly mosh about to. It's not tough, but it's catchy.
"My Own Worst Enemy" was so incredibly radio-friendly that it was hard not to get sucked into that punchy tune and sort of pathetic lyrics. The authors of this ditty will be playing Revolution Live this April 25. This news sparked in us a desire to whip out five other deliciously cheesy alt-rock songs that we're ashamed that we know all of the words to. All of them.
The Offspring, "Self Esteem"
This was a band that wasn't uncool entirely. But was it cool? This song, also about being miserable in love and life, is one of those worms that enters your brain after eating street food in Mexico and has now taken up residence in there and has internet access and stuff. Point is, this is a great karaoke song, and it is corn-ee.
Paul Westerberg, "Dyslexic Heart"
If you don't like Paul Westerberg, fuck you, a little. The Singles soundtrack remains a personal obsession. It's kind of obvious, though, that the Westerberg songs stand out as a little less "hard" on the album. They're wussy kinda, but they're also the most delightful! Enjoy this.
Rusted Root, "Send Me on My Way"
For years, we thought this song was about a whale and thus allowed ourselves to love it and sing along loudly when on the radio. "Simi and the whale" was actually "Send Me on My Way." We were also under the impression that Rusted Root was from New Zealand. This was all before the internet was something you used regularly.
Live, "Pain Lies on the Riverside"
Live's first album, Mental Jewelry, was better than Throwing Copper, but most people don't know that. So, we're telling you. Ed Kowalczyk was always so emotionally charged, so damaged and wanting to sing about it that Live had to be corny. Love this song. Love it.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Foo Fighters, "Everlong"
Before Dave Grohl became the voice of rock 'n' roll, he was what? Just Nirvana's drummer. Anyway, the Foo Fighters were a band that kind of had to grow on us all in the '90s, aided by their wonderfully funny videos. This is a legitimately awesome song, but the dramatics of it make it sort of not cool. But it's so much fun to sing along to this fun when you're crying! Yeah.
Tickets go on sale for Lit on Friday, March 23, at 10 a.m. Visit Livenation.com. The show takes place on April 25 at Revolution Live. 100 SW Third Ave., Fort Lauderdale.
Liz has her master’s degree in religion from Florida State University. She has since written for publications and outlets such as Miami New Times, Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Ocean Drive, the Huffington Post, NBC Miami, Time Out Miami, Insomniac, the Daily Dot, and the Atlantic. Liz spent three years as New Times Broward-Palm Beach’s music editor, was the weekend news editor at Inverse, and is currently the managing editor at Tom Tom Magazine.