1991: Losing My Religion and Smells Like Teen Spirit.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by MikeH1, Dec 5, 2001.

  1. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

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    Last night I watched a show about REM and couldn't help feeling that when Out Of Time was released in the spring of 1991 that America was craving for a new sound, that was eventually had in the autumn with Nirvana's Nevermind.

    We all know the history so I will not delve into that. But I really think Losing My Religion had a lot more influence than most can imagine. What kind of Number 1 hit was this? It shot up billboard like a bullet and sat there. The most unusual song at that time to do so. Sure, REM had a huge following but nothing like this. Ten million copies of Out Of Time were sold. One can think the song would overshadow the album, but I believe thats just not the case. The entire Southern sound at its best. The whole thing could have been the next anthem. But it wasn't, instead, we embraced Seattle and music was forever changed.

    Anyway, I thought about this when I watched the show and actually have sort of been thinking of 1991 a little lately. A pretty cool year to be 17. My own 1968. Woohooo!
     
  2. Eric Wood

    Eric Wood Stunt Coordinator

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    It was a great year to be 26[​IMG]
    I actually liked REM better that year than Nirvana, I grew up in Bellevue, WA. Redmond to the North and Seattle just a few miles west over the bridge!
     
  3. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    Hell, it was a great year to be 34!! [​IMG]
    Never got into Nirvana much, but I was already a fan of REM when they released "Out Of Time". Absolutely brilliant album - nothing even approaching a weak cut. It has stood the test of time (can't believe it's been a decade) and is easily one of the top ten albums of the 90s.
     
  4. Jon_B

    Jon_B Screenwriter

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    Could it be the artistic video that helped it to become so popular?

    Jon
     
  5. TheoGB

    TheoGB Screenwriter

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    Nevermind certainly stood the test of time. I dug it out a few months back and made an MD - it has become my most listened to album since then because of it.
    I've only ever heard Out Of Time once but REM have always been a little too 'light' for me. Losing My Religion, Lotus and many other good singles but they didn't seem that 'rock' somehow.
    However, they are something else live. I was totally blown away by their Glastonbury performance in (I think) 1999. They rocked so much and put so much energy into it. [​IMG]
    Not sure they'll ever really go above Nirvana for me. Thing about Kurt's songs is how strong they are just as songs. You could pretty much play the whole of Nevermind on acoustic guitar and it would still sound utterly compelling and fantastic.[​IMG]
     
  6. John Thomas

    John Thomas Cinematographer

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    There's a few things I'd like to touch on here. First, the Out of Time album marked a change, in my opinion, in REMs history where the band was slowly reverting back to it's indie roots even though it was multi-platinum. This may actually have caused the album to sell more - with the mainstream crwod already hooked and word getting around to the old-timer fans that they were changing.
    Second, Nirvana gets way too much credit for making a 'new' genre and being cutting edge. Don't get me wrong, Nevermind is a great album and I'm aware of their earlier material (Bleach in particular) but I'd say that Faith No More had primed the 'grunge pump' with their release, The Real Thing.
    Of course, it's late and I could just be talking out my arse. [​IMG]
     
  7. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

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    John, Epic was released in 1989 and was so far ahead of its time it didn't become mainstream until 10 years later(sorry all RAGE fans). By the time Out Of Time was released almost 2 years later, Epic had already done its top 40 run. I know what your trying to say, but I do remember Faith No More's Angel Dust being released in August 1992, with Seattle in full swing. Other than the brief hit single Mid Life Crisisthe album dissapeared, never to be heard of again.

    Now you want to talk brilliance....it is Faith No More's Angel Dust disc. So overlooked amongst the west coast sound its criminal.

    And to touch back on the Out Of Time release, its one of those that grows on me every year. I never realized how much my own tastes that this would play such a strong influence; the whole country-folk-rock sound is my new flavour. And believe me, it has been a long time in the making! Buddy and Julie Miller, Steve Earle, Bruce Cockburn and Dan Bern, among other artists. All because of REMs Out Of Time. To me, the absolute best recording of the entire decade.
     
  8. TheoGB

    TheoGB Screenwriter

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    Oooh. The recording of the decade. Controversial choice maybe? I really do want to hear this album again now. I last heard it about 5 years ago and, as I said, my opinion of REM has only grown since then. Doubt it will topple OK Computer as my personal greatest album (of any decade, in fact) but I think a trip to the library is in order this evening...[​IMG]
     
  9. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    For me, 1991 was a great year to be 21. Out of Time and Nevermind are two great albums and are very significant to me. I remember buying all the R.E.M. and Nirvana import CD singles I could find back in '91 and '92. I must have at least four different import singles of "Losing my Religion". Back in '91, I remember hearing Nirvana's "Come as You Are" the day I bought the Nevermind CD and saying to my friends, "This song will be a hit and will be all over the radio." Sure enough, it was. [​IMG]
    I agree that Faith No More deserves a lot of credit for launching the grunge craze. Epic is a brilliant album, and I also love Angel Dust. I bought a lot of import singles from those albums too.
     
  10. John Thomas

    John Thomas Cinematographer

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    Michael, there's no doubt that Angel Dust was a brilliant album. I've been behind this album for quite some time stating it's merits. It was groundbreaking, to say the least. Unfortunately, there weren't enough people listening out there. However, since The Real Thing did come out before, that's why I used it as the example that forged a new sound for Pop/Rock.
    Listening to Out of Time right now...not bad. I suppose the reason that I dismissed it earlier (when it came out) was the band's actions as more of a political force than just a band - "Shut up and sing, Michael"
    [​IMG]
    In case you're out there looking for Out of Time tracks, check out: Near Wild Heaven, Half a World Away, Belong and Texarkana.
     
  11. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

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    Yes, and for all of us REM Out Of Time fans there is a single of Country Feedback with Bob Dylan as a guest. His role I'm not sure of(could he be singing with Michael?) If I remember correctly, there was only 2000 copies or so made.
    Now try to track that one down for us Keith [​IMG]
     
  12. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Michael, that's one single I don't have. [​IMG]
     
  13. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

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    My mistake. Its done with Neil Young, not Bob Dylan. Should even be more interesting [​IMG]
     
  14. Adnan Sheikh

    Adnan Sheikh Stunt Coordinator

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    1991 was a great year to be...seven?

    I was a little late I guess. Still loved both bands, though.
     
  15. Chris Lynch

    Chris Lynch Stunt Coordinator

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    Michael,
    Your absolutely right about that being an important time. I was 17 in 1991 as well, and I feel lucky that such good music will be assosiated with our generation. I have a really minor, insignificant, not worth mentioning, itty bitty quibble. I really consider 1992 to be our own personal 1968, because while those albums were released in 91, they were EXPLODING in 1992. Plus, I graduated high school in 92, and I'm sure that contributes to my fondness of that year.
    And I couldn't agree with you more about FNM's "Angel Dust." Absolutely brilliant. My fave among their albums, and I like them all.
    In addition to "Nevermind" and "Out of Time", lets not forget others released in and around 91-92 that made that era so great: Pearl Jam's "Ten", Jane's Addiction's "Ritual de lo Habitual"(90), STP's "Core", Alice in Chains' "Dirt", and of course, the Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Blood Sugar Sex Magic."
    And for those of you who picked up on the Smashing Pumpkins on "Siamese Dream", do yourself a favor and go back and listen to "Gish." Truly phenomonal, IMHO. And in 1991!
    Dear Sweet Lord, what a great time to have been a music lover! [​IMG]
     
  16. Darren H

    Darren H Second Unit

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    Did any of you see the episode of VH1's Behind the Music that was devoted solely to '91? Along with REM and grunge, '91 (and early '92) were also significant because of the LA riots, the growing controversy over gangsta rap, and, later, the Gulf War. I was 19, and agree that it will definitely be our generation's '68. For further proof, just remember the line-up of Lollapalooza, which also began in summer of '91:

    - Henry Rollins Band

    - Butthole Surfers

    - Nine Inch Nails

    - Ice-T and Body Count

    - Siouxsie and the Banshees

    - Living Colour

    - Jane's Addiction

    Quite an eclectic and important show. I know that everyone always points to that ridiculous Aerosmith/Run-DMC collaboration as the beginning of the rap/rock hybrid, but I would say that Anthrax's cover of "Bring the Noise," Perry Ferrell and Ice-T doing "Don't call me Whitey," and Sonic Youth and Chuck D collaborating on "Kool Thing" were much more important.
     
  17. Sean Cauley

    Sean Cauley Stunt Coordinator

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    Darren, that VH1 special was actually about the whole of 1992, not '91, and gives many examples of why I agree with Chris that '92 was more our generation's 1968 (I was sixteen in '92, and graduated high school in '93). With the LA riots, the election of Clinton (featuring the highest young-voter turnout in years), and the radical shifts in pop culture tastes, this was a watershed year for a generation (in my understanding of the strict Gen-X and Gen-Y definitions, this generation of which I was a part actually falls between these two groups, but that's an argument for a different time).

    Movies were changing, with the popularity of such indie fare as Reservoir Dogs (although it wouldn't be until two years later that the indie revolution would truly be hailed, with the arrival of Pulp Fiction, Clerks, and several others). Music was changing: the simultaneous rises of alternative rock (although I agree that the mega-success of 1990's Out of Time really started the open-mindedness in mainstream tastes that allowed for the later flood of grunge, punk and other post-pop) and gangsta rap caused ripples that are still being felt, despite what most people perceive as a return to the simple pop tastes of the late eighties.

    Many of the albums released in 1991 (but popular in '92) and in 1992 were major departures from the top hits of prior years. The aforementioned Ritual de lo Habitual, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, Ten, Core and Nevermind were huge, as were the Spin Doctors' Pocket Full of Kryptonite, the Singles soundtrack, and REM's Automatic for the People, which was out by the end of 1992. On the rap front, The Chronic was released in 1992 and caused a revolution in black music for which no one was fully prepared.

    The VH1 special made out that so-called "grunge" was dead within a year or so, but the 1994/95 reign of Soundgarden's Superunknown would seem to refute that. And don't get me started on how the 1991/92 revolution paved the way for the unlikely runaway success of Nine Inch Nails in 1994.

    I could go on (for days, actually), but I shouldn't. I will mention, as I don't think anyone's pointed it out yet, that "Epic" was the 1990 Faith No More single, and the actual album from that period was The Real Thing (and both were great).
     
  18. John Thomas

    John Thomas Cinematographer

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    It's interesting when the direction of mainstream music takes a change in course and 1991-92 was one of those times. There were some precursors to this (reiterating FNM's The Real Thing; I'd mention Red Hot Chili Peppers Mothers Milk which came out in 1989 as well) but this course correction wasn't apparent to the masses until 1991. Some of the albums that I recall that came out around that time that were influential and/or quality:
    • Achtung Baby - U2
    • Ten - Pearl Jam
    • Little Earthquakes - Tori Amos
    • Nevermind - Nirvana
    • Broken - Nine Inch Nails
    • Rites of Passage - Indigo Girls
    • Girlfriend - Matthew Sweet
    • Out of Time - REM
    I'm skipping some more than likely but this is what I can recall listening to during the time. When will there be another time in musical history like this? What will be the next genre?
     
  19. Shawn C

    Shawn C Screenwriter

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    ...and don't forget another huge album in 1991, Metallica "Metallica" the black album. This album finally brought metal to the radio and into the mainstream.

    If it weren't for this album, there wouldn't be any "Linkin Park" or "Disturbed" or any of these other pseudo-metal/punk/grunge bands on the radio, let alone on any CD's.

    And another thing. I think their "S&M" album is way to underappreciated. I think alot of people saw it as a novelty but I hope that over time the album will be seen for the masterpiece that it really is.
     
  20. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    John, good calls on the U2 and Pearl Jam albums. Pearl Jam Ten and Red Hot Chili Peppers Blood Sugar Sex Magic are two albums that immediately come to mind when I think of popular music in 1991 and 1992. I have many singles from those albums too. Back in those days, I couldn't enough music from R.E.M., Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and the Chili Peppers. Great music, and great videos too.

    You know albums from years gone by have influenced you significantly when you remember when and where you bought them. I remember when and where I bought all of those popular albums from 1991 and 1992.
     

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