The Nineties

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I’ve approached music from the 1990’s gingerly because it was the period of my adolescence. Most of us form very strong attachments to the music playing while our pubes were popping, and those attachments generate a defensive protectiveness that distorts perception. We respond to anyone who attacks the music we first fucked to by throwing a tantrum and refusing to come out of our rooms. Music appeals to emotion above all, and adolescence is a cauldron of emotion.

I lost a good part of that attachment during a period in the 2000’s when I didn’t pay much attention to music. When I took up the habit again, I naturally went back to my music—the grunge, punk and Brit-pop of the 90’s. I found the experience rather embarrassing: I couldn’t believe I actually liked the crap I was hearing. Still, emotions run deep, so I’ve avoided doing reviews of several albums I was quite attached to: I don’t trust my ears when I listen to them.

You’ll find reviews of my favorite band of the era—Oasis—in their own section. You’ll find reviews of Ani Di Franco, PJ Harvey, Sade and Sinéad O’Connor in the Great Broads section. As for the rest . . .

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