History of Alternative Rock

  • Period: to

    Historical Development of Alternative Rock

  • Birth of Alternative Rock

    Some of the earliest bands started around this year such as The Cure. The bands played mostly rock music but brought other genres as well such as Reggae, Punk and Grunge into their music where the term Alternative Rock was used for this genre as the music didn't fit into any other genre. Bands started off by playing in small clubs and pubs and they were either signed to a small independent label or no one at all.
  • About Alternative Rock Bands

    Many Alternative bands had 'Do it yourself' attitude and were non-conformist. They didn't conform to any other genre and were Anti-mainstream. The bands would normally sing about dark and deep topics such as drug and alcohol abuse, depression and society. There were other bands who would sing about hope, battling addiction or depression, peace, freedom and positivity. This was mainly an underground music scene during the 80s but would be popular in the 90s.
  • MTV 120 Minutes

    There was no coverage on alternative music during the later 1980s but MTV started a new show called '120 Minutes' where they introduced music by bands such as Nirvana, The Smashing Pumpkins and Pearl Jam.
  • Increasing popularity

    Band Nirvana released new album 'Nevermind' which due to its popularity, a lot more people recognised the genre of alternative rock and started listening to grungy alternative music. American music festival 'Lollapalooza' took place during the 1990s for the 1st time and featured Butthole Surfers, Nine Inch Nails and Janes Addiction. This was a big change as bands had moved from playing small venues to big time concerts which was the beginning of commercialism and popularity.
  • Birth of Indie Music

    A new genre of alternative rock was created known as Indie music which had a softer sound than alternative rock. This ended up becoming hugely popular with bands like Modest Mouse, The Kooks and The Libertines.
  • Change in 21st Century

    In the early start of the 21st century many original alternative bands such as Smashing Pumpkins and Nirvana have broken up and they ended up being replaced by modern Indie bands. The lyrics of songs were based on happiness and humour now. This changed the genre as while it was anti-mainstream before, it is now one of the most mainstream genres out there.