Ten Flawless Albums From The '90s

6. Live Through This by Hole

I know I should include Nirvana on this list but I don’t wanna. Instead, I’m going to highlight Mrs. Cobain’s album, Live Through This. Released very shortly after Kurt killed himself, the album initially drew criticism for sounding too inspired by their grunge counterparts. What made it different though was, of course, Courtney Love. With her captivating stage presence and raucous punk vocals, she breathed life into her pop punk songs with a fervor. Not only is Live Through This an amazing grunge record, it’s responsible for the continued relevancy of Courtney love. Can’t argue with that.

7. No Need To Argue by The Cranberries

Speaking of arguing, you can’t think of the nineties without remembering Dolores O’Riordan’s wails on the wildly successful album from The Cranberries, No Need To Argue. The band had become famous with their first offering, Everyone Else Is Doing It So Why Can’t We?, but it was their second record that made them unforgettable. For awhile there, you couldn’t go anywhere without hearing the impassioned cries of “Zombie”, which is actually one of my least favorite Cranberries songs. It should be noted that I was obsessed with this band as a child. I listened to their music over and over, and was enamored with the lead singer. I thought she was just such a badass with her tough lyrics and vocals that would often either terrify me or move me to tears. God, The Cranberries were so ’90s. I think when 2000 hit, the band just blew up.

8. (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? by Oasis

The Gallagher Brothers were the biggest shitheads of the ’90s. They were always getting into fights, taking drugs, and breaking up the band. But people forgave them for it because their music was so good. Their second album, (What’s The Story) Morning Glory, is undoubtedly their piece de resistance. With the midnight sulk of tracks like “Wonderwall” and “Champagne Supernova”, the band ditched the attitude and showed their sensitive side. Every song is good, every song could be a hit. It’s like Noel and Liam went to family therapy, vomited their feelings on to a piece of paper and created a masterpiece.

9. Enema Of The State by Blink-182

Blink-182 got a lot of crap for making Enema Of The State. Diehard fans complained that the band had abandoned their punk roots for a more radio-friendly sound. To this I say, “LOL”. Have you heard early Blink? It may have been louder, faster, and less melodic, but it was NEVER punk. Besides, the album is an amazing slice of pop punk and spawned so many imitators. And now 15 years later, it’s so cool to love Blink-182. It’s so cool to admit you loved Enema Of The State. So there you go. Everything is cyclical, people are stupid and Enema Of The State is really good.

10. Self-Titled by The La’s

You know The La’s from that song “There She Goes” but there is a 90% chance you haven’t heard anything else from them. That’s understandable considering the band only released one album. What they did put out, however, was spectacular. Today, you would listen to it and be like, “Oh, it’s very Pete Doherty and Oasis” but you have to realize that the album came out before any of those artists got their start. It was influential particularly in the British music scene and inspired a bunch of bands who would later form. Bummer that the band couldn’t get their shit together to record a follow up.

image – Blink-182


Ryan O'Connell

I'm a brat.

More From Thought Catalog

  • Scott Southard

    Whelp.  Shut ‘er down boys.  We’re done here.  

    Although I could go for a PJ Harvey album in here.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=704016484 Joe Ott

    And…hipster coming out party. Wtf, The Bends isn’t good enough for ya???

  • Anonymous


    • http://twitter.com/galette_rois Julian Galette

      THAT’S WHAT I’M FUCKING SAYING! There’s a dangerous lack of No Doubt, Jay-Z and Wu-Tang motherfuckering Clan on this list. 

      • ariel

        Oh yeah! And No Doubt! This list lacks accuracy. 

    • beck

       seriously, THAT is a flawless album. the only no doubt album i still go back and listen to.

  • Falco

    This should’ve been called “10 Reasons Why Ryan O’Connell Has The Worst Taste In Music (Regardless Of The Decade)”

    • Anonymous

      whatever…TLC ruled!

  • A.

    my new car didn’t have an ipod hookup so for literally 3 weeks straight all I listened to was Enema of the State. still not sick of it.

  • http://hydeparkblvd.wordpress.com Allison Berger

    Third. Eye. Blind.

  • anonymous

    Completely ignoring all of 90’s hip-hop, okay fine, be that way.

    • Guest


  • ryan chang

    my blink fave is definitely ‘dude ranch.’ it has ‘dammit’–what an angst-filled pre-teen jam!

  • Swervedriver

    Are you a Woman?  You picked the top ten most annoying albums from the ’90s.

    • http://twitter.com/nuclearcabbage Nive


      • http://www.facebook.com/Cock.Thunder Joseph Anthony Nicoletti


    • http://twitter.com/no_cazador hunter ray


  • Anonymous

    You forgot Portishead Dummy

  • http://twitter.com/AFDex16 Tony F.

    i think i just threw up in my mouth a little…..

  • Liamb90

    Lauryn Hill – The Miseducation of Laurn Hill?
    Bjork – Homogenic?

    • anna

      miseducation of lauryn hill is flawless for sure

  • That Guy

    Right…cause Blur is just awful.

    • anon


  • http://twitter.com/cream_dreamz Stephanie Jones

    Spice World

  • Nate

    “And now 15 years later, it’s so cool to love Blink-182. It’s so cool to admit you loved Enema Of The State. So there you go. Everything is cyclical, people are stupid and Enema Of The State is really good.” …I feel oddly vindicated.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=707272007 Alex Thayer

    at least 8 of these albums do not come anywhere near flawless

    • EP

      In the ’90s, when you were a child, they were flawless. Also, definitely forgot Backstreet Boys-Millennium. And Elliott Smith-Either/Or.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=707272007 Alex Thayer

        this might be the douchiest thing that i have ever said in my internet career, and i fully expect to be judged for it, but i didn’t like the majority of these bands when i was a child [sic]

      • Guest

        Yeah, I can’t say I was listening to much of this when I was seven in the early 90s.  

        Achy.  Breaky.  Heart.

  • http://twitter.com/t_baugh Travis Baugh

    Numbers 1 and 9 are true but you forgot about Spiderland, In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, Repeater, Loveless, Vivadixiesubmarinetransmissionplot, F#A# Infinity, and most of Stereolab’s career

  • Anonymous

    At least this was objective.

  • Katie

    TLC, Blink, Alanis, Oasis, yes. Maybe Garbage. But where is THIRD EYE BLIND?!

    • K.


      • oy

        Yes! I was so confused it wasn’t there

    • Adolf Hipster

      Third Eye Blind was fucking terrible. Watered down, radio-friendly, cookie cutter corporate crap rock. 

  • http://staugustinian.wordpress.com/ STaugustine

    No. Jeff. Buckley.

  • Anonymous

    Live Through This was my middle school anthem. 

  • Anonymous

    I have never cared for Alanis and there is a lack of Belle and Sebastian tbh.

    • Topriko

      then write your own top ten on your blog!!

  • http://twitter.com/WarofArt Joseph

    Blink 182, that’s some serious 90s shit. Brings me back to doing dumb shit with carts, pretending to be Johnny Knoxville.

    Holy shit. It’s like I’m having acid flashbacks.

  • LaurenK

    Definitely can’t believe you left out The Mis-Education of  Lauryn Hill. So flawless, so much more influential and ground breaking than TLC

    • Guest

      I agree, but there’s no need to harsh on TLC.  Crazysexycool is fucking awesome.  

  • http://fastfoodies.org Briana

    i liked this list because it catered to those of us who were kids in the 90s, whose musical roots are, simply, mainstream radio.

    i never knew any ‘indie’ music, nor hip-hop. my 90s was basically just alanis morrisette, though i threw away her cd after i had dreams that she was the devil (prob vis-a-vis her saying “chicken shit” and “fuck”, and me being of the southern christian ‘pray-for-your-soul-if-you-say-bad-words’ variety) but later received her cd as a christmas present and it was like slappy, the dummy from Night of the Living Dummy who kept returning even after lindy and her sister threw him away/buried him/etc.

blog comments powered by Disqus