Best 100 (mostly rock) songs of the ’90s

04/09/2012

Don’t agree with this list? Let me know about it in the comment section below!

1. Counting Crows – “Mr. Jones”
2. 4 Non Blondes – “What’s Up?”
3. Tom Petty – “Into the Great Wide Open”
4. Garbage – “Only Happen when it Rains”
5. The Refreshments – “Banditos”
6. Depeche Mode – “Enjoy the Silence”
7. Beck – “Loser”
8. M.C. Hammer – “U Can’t Touch This”
9. Collective Soul – “The World I Know”
10. Foo Fighters – “Everlong”
11. Local H – “Bound for the Floor”
12. Cracker – “Low”
13. Nine Inch Nails – “Closer”
14. Sneaker Pimps – “Six Underground”
15. Butthole Surfers – “Pepper”
16. Live – “I Alone”
17. Stabbing Westward – “Shame”
18. Stone Temple Pilots – “Big Empty”
19. Veruca Salt – “Seether”
20. Alice in Chains – “Heaven Beside You”
21. Blind Melon – “No Rain”
22. Smashing Pumpkins – “Tonight, Tonight”
23. The Verve Pipe – “Photograph”
24. Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Give it Away”
25. Rage Against the Machine – “Guerrilla Radio”
26. Weezer – “Say It Ain’t So”
27. Depeche Mode – “Policy of Truth”
28. Tool – “Stinkfist”
29. The Cure – “Friday I’m in Love”
30. R.E.M. – “Losing my Religion”
31. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones – “The Impression that I Get”
32. Smashing Pumpkins – “Disarm”
33. Spacehog – “In the Meantime”
34. Primitive Radio Gods – “Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth with Money in my Hand”
35. Alice in Chains – “Rooster”
36. Lenny Kravitz – “Are You Gonna Go My Way”
37. Rob Zombie – “Dragula”
38. Weezer – “Undone (the Sweater Song)”
39. Filter – “Hey Man, Nice Shot”
40. Orgy – “Blue Monday”
41. Skee-lo – “I Wish”
42. Candlebox – “You”
43. Harvey Danger – “Flagpole Sitta”
44. Sublime – “What I Got”
45. Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Under the Bridge”
46. Faith No More – “Epic”
47. Smashing Pumpkins – “Bullet with Butterfly Wings”
48. The Offspring – “Gone Away”
49. Republica – “Ready to Go”
50. Nirvana – “All Apologies”
51. Pearl Jam – “Black”
52. Live – “Selling the Drama”
53. Eagle Eye Cherry – “Save Tonight”
54. Collective Soul – “Shine”
55. Dishwalla – “Counting Blue Cars”
56. Nada Surf – “Popular”
57. 2Pac – “California Love”
58. Cake – “I Will Survive” cover
59. Korn – “Got the Life”
60. Vanilla Ice – “Ice Ice Baby”
61. Lit – “My Own Worst Enemy”
61. Foo Fighters – “My Hero”
62. Snoop Dogg – “Gin and Juice”
63. Toadies – “Possum Kingdom”
64. Eels – “Novocaine for the Soul”
65. Alanis Morissette – “You Oughta Know”
66. Soul Asylum – “Runaway Train”
67. Nine Inch Nails – “The Perfect Drug”
68. Ben Folds Five – “Brick”
69. Garbage – “Stupid Girl”
70. Danzig – “Mother”
71. Toad the Wet Sprocket – “Walk on the Ocean”
72. EMF – “Unbelievable”
73. INXS – “Suicide Blonde”
74. Nine Inch Nails – “Wish”
75. Jesus Jones – “Right Here, Right Now”
76. Breeders – “Cannonball”
77. Bush – “Little Things”
78. Foo Fighters – “I’ll Stick Around”
79. Blur – “Song 2”
80. Marcy Playground – “Sex and Candy”
81. Ugly Kid Joe – “Everything About You”
82. The Verve Pipe – “The Freshmen”
83. Salt-n-Peppa – “Shoop”
84. Reel Big Fish – “Sell Out”
85. The Rentals – “Friends of P.”
86. Radiohead – “Creep”
87. Poe – “Angry Johnny”
88. C+C Music Factory – “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)”
89. Garth Brooks – “Friends in Low Places”
90. Nirvana – “Come as You Are”
91. Jars of Clay – “Flood”
92. Lisa Loeb – “Stay (I Missed You)”
93. Us3 – “Cantaloop”
94. Placebo – “Pure Morning”
95. Primus – “Wynona’s Big Brown Beaver”
96. Cardigans – “Lovefool”
97. Meat Puppets – “Backwater”
98. Natalie Imbruglia – “Torn”
99. OMC – “How Bizarre”
100. Letters to Cleo – “Here and Now”

Honorable Mentions:
Nirvana – “Smells Like Teen Spirit”
Kris Kross – “Jump”
Spin Doctors – “Two Princes”
Prick – “No Fair Fights” (I love this one, even if only about eight people in the world have heard it)
Boyz to Men – “Motown Philly”

Songs you can’t convince me belong on this list:
Len – “Steal My Sunshine”
Snow – “Informer”
Sugar Ray – “Every Morning”
Crash Test Dummies – “Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm”
Rednex – “Cotton Eye Joe”
Los del Río – “Macarena”
Ricky Martin – “Livin’ La Vida Loca”
Savage Garden – “Truly Madly Deeply”
Billy Ray Cyrus – “Achy Breaky Heart”

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2 Responses to “Best 100 (mostly rock) songs of the ’90s”

  1. CENTSOARER said

    Well done! It’s kind of for the masses (of the 90s) but a good shaped list. I am not a big fan of some of them like Radiohead’s Creep and, Placebo’s Pure Morning and Blur’s Song 2. I’d go for Just, Without you I’m nothing and The Universal, respectively. I’m a big eels fan and their most acclaimed album is from 1998, and it contains some true jewels far better than Novocaine for the soul.

    Another thing I didn’t like in your list are those bands occupying more than one number. I won’t argue The Smashing Pumpkins weren’t the shit in the 90s or something, it’s just… I don’t know, best 90s rock songs should have U2 (Achtung Baby), Oasis (really not a fan here) and Suede.

    Just my opinion, I loved your list!

    • Thanks so much for your feedback! I’m pleased you enjoyed looking through the list, as it took quite a while but was a fun task. Indeed, the list is largely for the masses. Many of these songs had a ton of airplay, and I just never dug deeper into more of the obscure work by some of the artists, like Eels. An old boss of mine recommended checking out more of their catalog… I never got around to it so, based on your interest, too, it’s about time I finally do that.

      I tried to not overdo it with the same artist occupying multiple spots, but hey, it just feels like some groups did some really special stuff multiple times. Having not ever been an especially big fan, I still do sort of regret not having U2 anywhere on the list. They really broke a lot of ground, and I respect their artistry, but I’ve never passed the time by putting on some U2.

      I’m going to have to look up Suede… I’m not familiar with that one. Thanks, again, for the feedback. I appreciate the fresh perspective on these selections.

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