today is the 20th anniversary of the release of Nirvana’s Nevermind album. just wanted to share my thoughts on that album, and a few others, that came out around that time.
Guns N’ Roses – Use Your Illusion I & II – September 17, 1991
II and I debuted at #1 and 2, respectively. the only thing bigger than the budgets for the videos to songs like “November Rain” and “Estranged” is Axl Rose’s ego. a double album that barely had enough decent material to make one album. “Don’t Cry” is a great song, and I liked the video just for the part where Slash drives his car off a cliff, and then in the next scene, he’s cranking out a wicked solo. oh yeah, and also the part where Stephanie Seymour bitchslaps that other chick, MMMM!!! produced by Mike Clink (who also produced Megadeth’s Rust In Peace album)
Metallica – The Black Album – August 13, 1991
debuted at #1, selling 650,000 copies in it’s first week. hailed as a commercial and critical success, this album pretty much signaled the end of Metallica, as we knew them. gone were the songs where they tried to cram 1000 notes into a single bar. they traded in songs about issues like drug abuse, war, and politics, for songs with catchy riffs, and less in the way of substantive lyrics. they also replaced Flemming Rasmussen, who produced such classic albums as Ride The Lightning and Master of Puppets, with Bob Rock, )who’s worked with such artists as 311 and Our Lady Peace), yeah…”The Unforgiven” while slower, is my favourite track.
Pearl Jam – Ten – August 27, 1991
sales didn’t pick up until around summer 1992, when they released the video for “Jeremy” which helped propel it to #2 on the Billboard 200. back when MTV played music videos, Pearl Jam was a staple of their heavy rotation. “Evenflow” is a great song, which I still love to this day. strangely, the version they used for MTV and the radio, sounds a lot better than the version that appears on the album. produced by Rick Parashar (who’s worked with artists like Alice In Chains and Blind Melon)
Nirvana – Nevermind – September 24, 1991
debuted at #144, reached #1 by January, with help off the release of “Come As You Are” the album that put an end to hair metal, and had everyone and their mother wearing flannel shirts. I remember everyone in my high school went apeshit for “Smells Like Teen Spirit” looking back now, this is my least favourite Nirvana album. “Come As You Are” is a great song and I also liked the video for it. produced by Butch Vig (drummer for Garbage)
Red Hot Chili Peppers – Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik – September 24, 1991
certified platinum on April 1, 1992; peaked at #3 on the Billboard 200, thanks to “Under The Bridge” u could make a strong case that RHCP were at their creative peak with this album. I listen to it now, and there’s not a bad track on there. this album spawned a handful of top 40 hits, which cemented their status in pop culture. “Breaking The Girl” would hafta be my favourite track. produced by Rick Rubin (who has most notably worked with artists like The Beastie Boys and Slayer)
Skid Row – Slave To The Grind – June 11, 1991
the very first “metal” album to debut at #1 in the SoundScan era. I used to have this album on vinyl. it’s the only one on this list, that I bought within the first week of release. as u can tell, my music taste was impeccable, even 20 years ago. produced by the guy who played guitar in the band that played that song “Balls to the Wall”
next week: WAS 1986 THE MOST METALEST YEAR EVER?!? IN A WORD, FUCK YEAH!!!