Is Alternative Music Making a Comeback?
It hasn't been that long since alternative music dominated the radio. (You know, when everyone was obsessed with Smashmouth and dating Pete Wentz was #relationshipgoals). Sure, all popular things eventually fade out, but they never die completely. While pop music is still the dominant trend in radio play, alternative music has found a way back into the larger listening collective.
After the domination of grunge and punk in the 90s, alternative music had a significant influence on popular culture from shaggy hair, piercings, flannels, neon clothes and guys wearing eyeliner. Artists like, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Weezer, The Smashing Pumpkins and a variety of other alternative bands found fame in the 90s with their distinct sounds. All across the nation garage bands were inspired by the sounds of these artists, and were practicing the guitar riffs or trying their best to imitate Eddie Vedder’s famous grovel. They topped the charts with their hits and spawned successful solo acts, most notably Gwen Stefani from No Doubt.
But at the turn of the early 2000s alternative music met its competition in the form of high-energy pop music. Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Beyonce, Usher, Justin Timberlake (post-NSYNC) and countless others found major fame, and with that alternative music took a backseat for a time being. But what emerged from that was a genre combining of alternative music and pop music. For instance, Panic! At the Disco, Fall Out Boy, The Killers and countless other similar artists found success with blending the genres and capturing a new audience. The band Twenty One Pilots has found radio success with their hit “Stressed Out” which has had major play on both alternative and Top 40 radio.
For those of us that still sing along to “Buddy Holly” or scream sing “Somebody Told Me," alternative music will always be in our hearts. The good new is it doesn't have to be a cherished memory that you only listen to on that random CD in your car. To prove that alternative never dies, the Alt gods have blessed us. There's new music from Simple Plan who are coming out with another album, Fall Out Boy is going on tour (they’re coming to Syracuse in March) and the best band combo tour: Weezer and Panic! At the Disco are doing a joint tour this summer. So sure, your alt crush (I’m looking at you, Pete Wentz) is probably a dad now, but that doesn’t mean he’s lost his charm. And you can bet your ass I’ll be front row singing along to “I Write Sins Not Tragedies.”