Top 10 Rock Bands of the 1990s

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The Top Ten

1 Nirvana Nirvana Nirvana was an American grunge band that was formed in Aberdeen, Washington in 1987. Nirvana disbanded after Kurt Cobain committed suicide in 1994. The drummer of the band, David Grohl, went on to start the Foo-Fighters, an alternative rock band. ...read more.

I know, I know. This is super overrated, but I didn't want to make anyone mad by not putting it first. - Stonerquist

Nirvana is the best band ever

HELL YEAH

Nirvana almost wasn't elligible for this list, having had a strong base in the 80s. But nirvana still had major success and influentual break throughs before kurt cobains suicide in 1994. Nirvana was unquestionably had more emmotion, song writting, and popularity than just about every other band from the 90s.
BEST SONG: HEART SHAPED BOX

2 Radiohead Radiohead Radiohead are an English rock band from Abingdon, Oxfordshire, formed in 1985. The band consists of Thom Yorke (lead vocals, guitar, piano, keyboards), Jonny Greenwood (lead guitar, keyboards, other instruments), Colin Greenwoood (bass guitar), Phil Selway (drums), and Ed O'Brien (guitar).

One of the best rock bands EVER, not to mention in the 90s. The 90s is just when they were the best. They had their two best albums in the 90s. Seriously Radiohead is the best.

Definitely Radiohead, even over Nirvana. By far the most influential band of the decade.

Personally I think radiohead is basically nirvana with actually technical ability. But actually, that's a great thing especially since bands like creed and collective soul are just shallow rip offs. Radiohead is pretty much the only post grunge band who is allowed on this list
BEST SONG: PABLO

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3 Green Day Green Day Green Day are an American pop punk and alternative rock band formed in East Bay, California in 1987. The members include Billie Joe Armstrong (vocals and guitar), Mike Dirnt (bass), Tré Cool (drums) and Jason White (guitar) . Green Day are associated with punk rock, pop punk and alternative rock. Some ...read more.

Green Day is like my life their music has inspired me to do so many things with my life they should be at least top five though I love nirvana too Green Day in my opinion is the best Billie Mike and Tre for life!

Almost missed this one. But I would not be able to do that. Green Day is a great alt. Band. Note that their OLD MUSIC is better than their new stuff, but a great band all together. - Stonerquist

I really cannot see Green Day being lower than #2. The early 1990s were almost the end of great rock bands, but Nirvana has to fit here & Green Day is the exception to the decline of the rest into navel-gazing emos or thrashing thuds. Navel-gazing emo isn't always a bad thing, but it sure ain't "Rock".

1990 - Slappy
1992 - Kerplunk
1994 - Dookie
1995 - Insomniac
1997 - Nimrod

4 Red Hot Chilli Peppers

They deserve a spot here. They are such a good band. - Stonerquist

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5 The Smashing Pumpkins The Smashing Pumpkins The Smashing Pumpkins is an American alternative rock band from Chicago, Illinois, formed in 1988. Formed by frontman Billy Corgan and James Iha, the band included D'arcy Wretzky and Jimmy Chamberlin in its original incarnation. They are also considered to be one of the most influential alternative ...read more.

So underrated on this site... - Bboymakinwitthefrekfreak

6 Pearl Jam Pearl Jam Pearl Jam is a Grunge Rock Band formed in Seattle, Washington in 1990. The band had comprised of Eddie Vedder, Mike McCready, Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament. ...read more.

I think Pearl Jam deserve more than third. 25 years and they are still selling out stadiums.

No band better... And they're still doing it!

Even though Vedder directly influenced the vocal style of Creed, Collective Soul, and company (BARF! ) they still had incredible angst and powerful gituar rifts which makes them slightly better than most grunge bands of the early 90s
BEST SONG: ALIVE

Green day ha!

7 Metallica Metallica Metallica is an American Thrash Metal band formed in 1981 . The original lineup was James Hetfield (Vocalist and Rhythm guitarist), Dave Mustaine (Lead Guitar), Lars Ulrich (Drums), Ron McGovney (Bassist). The group came into mainstream from their Self-Titled album and the hit single "Enter Sandman". ...read more.
8 Foo Fighters Foo Fighters Foo Fighters are an American rock band, formed in Seattle in 1994. The band was founded by Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl after the death of Kurt Cobain and the dissolution of his previous band. The band consists of Dave Grohl (lead vocalist, rhythm guitar, main songwriter), Pat Smear (rhythm guitar), Nate ...read more.

They deserve to be on the upper level of the list!

9 Soundgarden Soundgarden Soundgarden is an American rock band formed in Seattle, Washington, in 1984 by singer and rhythm guitarist Chris Cornell, lead guitarist Kim Thayil, and bassist Hiro Yamamoto.
10 Blink-182 Blink-182 Blink-182 are a Pop Punk band formed in 1992. Original lineup were Mark Hoppus (Bass Guitar, Vocals) ...read more.

The Contenders

11 Goo Goo Dolls Goo Goo Dolls The Goo Goo Dolls are an American rock band formed in 1986 in Buffalo, New York, by vocalist and guitarist John Rzeznik, vocalist and bassist Robby Takac, and drummer George Tutuska.

John Rzeznik & Tobby Takac - they are amazing talents! Thank you for all the great music please don't stop making awesome songs...

12 Weezer Weezer Weezer is an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1992, currently consisting of Rivers Cuomo (lead vocals, lead and rhythm guitar), Patrick Wilson, Brian Bell, and Scott Shriner.
13 Pantera Pantera Pantera was an American Heavy Metal band formed in 1981 by guitarist Dimebag Darrell and drummer Vinnie Paul. The band started out as a Glam Metal act in the 1980s with little success. After discarding their original lead vocalist and enlisting Phil Anselmo, the band signed a major record deal with ...read more.

Do I really have to argue this one? Pantera wrote some of the best rifts of all time, kept thrash alive in the 90s, and did it all in a groovey style that made everyone in the audience go nuts.
BEST SONG: CEMETARY GATES

WALK ON HOME BOY - Brobusky

14 Blind Guardian Blind Guardian Blind Guardian is a German power metal band formed in the mid-1980s in West Germany. They are often credited as one of the seminal and most influential bands in the power metal and speed metal subgenres. Heavily influenced by Queen, they use the technique of overdubbing. They also incorporate large ...read more.
15 The Offspring The Offspring The Offspring is an American punk rock band from Huntington Beach, California, formed in 1984. Formed under the name Manic Subsidal, the band consists of lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Dexter Holland, bassist Greg K., lead guitarist Kevin "Noodles" Wasserman and drummer Pete Parada.

Fantastic band.Deserve a place in Top Ten..I recommend their following songs to you:
Self Esteem
Pretty Fly
Want You Bad..

16 Helmet Helmet Helmet is an American alternative metal band from New York City formed in 1989. Founded by vocalist and lead guitarist Page Hamilton, Helmet has had numerous lineup changes, and Hamilton has been the only constant member.
17 Melvins Melvins The Melvins are an American band that formed in 1983. They usually perform as a trio, but in recent years have performed as a four piece with two drummers.
18 Iced Earth Iced Earth Iced Earth is an American heavy metal band from Tampa, Florida. It was formed in 1985 under the name Purgatory by guitarist and main songwriter Jon Schaffer and original drummer Greg Seymour.
19 Alice In Chains Alice In Chains Alice in Chains is an American rock band formed in Seattle, Washington, in 1987 by guitarist and songwriter Jerry Cantrell and original lead vocalist Layne Staley.
20 Guns N' Roses
21 Deftones Deftones Deftones are an American alternative metal band from Sacramento, California. The band, which was founded in 1988, consists of Chino Moreno, Stephen Carpenter, Frank Delgado, Abe Cunningham and Sergio Vega.

I'm really tired of deftones never gettin any representation on these lists. They're the most talented nu metal band ever. Period. Also all those nu metal singers who get all wispery and then explode with rage are just mimicking chino monero's vocal style. Also the deftones are the only nu metal bands who can play comfortably out of they're genre.
BEST SONG: 7 WORDS

To that comment below:

Deftones aren't even Nu-Metal. They were for their first album or 2. They are alternative metal. They aren't "playing out of their genre"

22 Type O Negative Type O Negative Type O Negative was an American gothic/doom metal band formed in Brooklyn, New York City in 1989. Their lyrical emphasis on themes of romance, depression, and death resulted in the nickname "The Drab Four".
23 Pixies Pixies The Pixies are an American alternative rock band formed in 1986 in Boston, Massachusetts. The group disbanded in 1993 in acrimonious circumstances, but reunited in 2004. The group currently consists of founders Black Francis, Joey Santiago, and David Lovering.
24 Children of Bodom Children of Bodom Children Of Bodom is a melodic death metal band from Espoo, Finland. Formed in 1993, the group currently consists of Alexi Laiho, Janne Wirman, Henkka Seppälä, Jaska Raatikainen and Daniel Freyberg.

Being an avid death, power, thrash metal fan I thought I had heard all those genres had to offer. Until I listened to Call of Duty which mixed all of them excellentaly
BEST SONG: BODOM AFTER MIDNIGHT

25 Iron Maiden Iron Maiden Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band formed in Leyton, East London, in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. The most critically acclaimed period for the band was from 1983-1989. With vocalist Bruce Dickinson, bassist Steve Harris, lead guitarist Dave Murray, rhythm guitarist Adrian ...read more.
26 Sonic Youth Sonic Youth Sonic Youth was an American rock band from New York City, formed in 1981. Founding members Thurston Moore, Kim Gordon and Lee Ranaldo remained together for the entire history of the band, while Steve Shelley followed a series of short-term drummers in 1985, and rounded out the core line-up.
27 Fear Factory Fear Factory Fear Factory is an American heavy metal band that was formed in 1989. During the band's career, it has released nine full-length albums and has evolved through a succession of styles, including industrial metal, death metal, groove metal, and thrash metal.
28 Beastie Boys Beastie Boys The Beastie Boys are an American Rap/Rock group that was formed in 1981 by its three original members, Michael "Mike D" Diamond, Adam "Ad-Rock" Horovitz, and Adam "MCA" Yauch. V 1 Comment
29 Tool Tool Tool is an American progressive metal/alternative metal band, that was formed in 1990. ...read more.

Aenima was such an amazing album. These guys deserve more recongnition

Tool is, for me, the rush of the 90s. They have no boundries. All of tool's songs take you on a journey and have amazing composer. Tool also remains one of the darkest bands of all time
BEST SONG: LATERALUS

30 Red Hot Chili Peppers Red Hot Chili Peppers The Red Hot Chili Peppers is an American funk-rock and alternative rock band, that was founded in 1983. ...read more.
31 Entombed Entombed Entombed is a Swedish heavy metal band formed in 1987 under the name of Nihilist. Entombed began their career as an early pioneer of Scandinavian death metal which initially differed from its American counterpart by its distinct "buzzsaw" guitar tone.
32 Nine Inch Nails Nine Inch Nails Nine Inch Nails is an American industrial rock/metal band and, founded in 1988 by Trent Reznor in Cleveland, Ohio.

So underrated on this site.

33 Linkin Park Linkin Park Linkin Park is an American rock band formed in Agoura Hills, California, in 1996. The members include Chester Bennington (vocals), Mike Shinoda (rapping vocals, pianist), Brad Delson (guitar), Dave "Phoenix" Farrell (bass), Joe Hahn (DJ) and Rob Bourdon (drums). Linkin Park are associated with a mixture ...read more.

They're great, but they didn't become famous until the early 2000s. - Rorywilbren

34 X Japan X Japan X Japan is a Japanese heavy metal band from Chiba, formed in 1982 by drummer Yoshiki and lead vocalist Toshi.
35 Bon Jovi Bon Jovi Bon Jovi is a hard rock band formed in 1983, which had a streak of successful albums in the late 1980s. The band originally consisted of lead vocalist Jon Bon Jovi, guitarist Ritchie Sambora (left in 2013), bassist Alec John Such (left in 1994), keyboard David Bryan, and drummer Tico Torres. The band's ...read more.

While the 90s was not their heyday, they are still the best band in the world. And what is Led Zeppelin doing on this list? They were long gone by the 90s (still an awesome band though).

36 Gamma Ray Gamma Ray Gamma Ray is a power metal band from Hamburg, northern Germany, founded and fronted by Kai Hansen after his departure from the German power metal band Helloween.
37 Oasis Oasis Oasis were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1991. Developed from an earlier group, the Rain, the band originally consisted of Liam Gallagher (vocals and tambourine), Paul "Bonehead" Arthurs, Paul "Guigsy" McGuigan, and Tony McCarroll.
38 Black Sabbath Black Sabbath Black Sabbath were a Heavy Metal band formed in Birmingham, England in 1968 by guitarist and songwriter Tony Iommi, Singer Ozzy Osbourne, Bassist and Main Lyricist Geezer Butler and Drummer Bill Ward. The band got into mainstream after improving after their debut album got negative feedback. In 1978, ...read more.
39 Barenaked Ladies Barenaked Ladies Barenaked Ladies is a Canadian rock band. The band is currently composed of Jim Creeggan, Kevin Hearn, Ed Robertson, and Tyler Stewart.
40 R.E.M. R.E.M. R.E.M. was an American rock band from Athens, Georgia, formed in 1980 by lead singer Michael Stipe, lead guitarist Peter Buck, bassist/backing vocalist Mike Mills, and drummer Bill Berry.
41 Queen Queen Queen are an English rock band formed in 1970. Members were Freddie Mercury (Vocals and Piano), Brian May (Guitar, Vocals), Roger Taylor (Drums, Vocals), and John Deacon (Bass Guitar, Vocals). Before forming into Queen, Brian May and Roger Taylor had played together in a band named Smile. Freddie Mercury ...read more.
42 Stone Temple Pilots Stone Temple Pilots Stone Temple Pilots was formed in San Diego, CA in 1989. ...read more.
43 Rage Against the Machine Rage Against the Machine Rage Against the Machine is a rock band formed in Los Angeles, California. The band consists of vocalist Zack de la Rocha, bassist Tim Commerford, guitarist Tom Morello and drummer Brad Wilk.

Were to start? RATM unquestionably crafted the nu metal style. Had the best bassist of all time. Had the best guitarist of the 90s. And are the most politicaly charged band of all time. RATM isn't just the best band of the 90s they're one of the best of all time
BEST SONG: WAKE UP

44 Korn Korn Korn is an American Nu-Metal band from Bakersfield, California, formed in 1993. The band's current lineup includes founding members Jonathan Davis, James "Munky" Shaffer, Brian "Head" Welch, and Reginald "Fieldy" Arvizu, with the addition of Ray Luzier, who replaced the band's original member, David ...read more.

Wayy too low on the list their best music was in the 90's

KoRn makes this list because they're more creative than most nu metal bands. Truth be told koRn really isn't nu metal except for there down tuned gituar and base style.
BEST SONG: BLIND

45 Evanescence Evanescence Evanescence is an American rock band founded in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1995 by singer/pianist Amy Lee and guitarist Ben Moody.
46 Nickelback Nickelback Nickelback is a Canadian rock band formed in 1995 in Hanna, Alberta, Canada. The band is composed of guitarist and lead vocalist Chad Kroeger, guitarist, keyboardist and backing vocalist Ryan Peake, bassist Mike Kroeger, and drummer Daniel Adair.
47 Eraserheads Eraserheads Eraserheads is a Filipino rock band formed in 1989. Consisting of Ely Buendia, Marcus Adoro, Buddy Zabala and Raimund Marasigan, the band became one of the most successful, most influential, critically acclaimed, and significant bands in the Philippine music history.
48 Placebo Placebo Placebo are an English alternative rock band, formed in London in 1994 by singer-guitarist Brian Molko and guitarist-bassist Stefan Olsdal.
49 Sublime Sublime Sublime was an American ska punk band from Long Beach, California, formed in 1988. The band's line-up, unchanged until their breakup, consisted of Bradley Nowell, Eric Wilson and Bud Gaugh.
50 Megadeth Megadeth Megadeth is an American thrash metal band from Los Angeles, California. Megadeth was formed in 1983 by guitarist Dave Mustaine and bassist David Ellefson, shortly after Mustaine was fired from Metallica. They have released 15 studio albums to date, and have gone through many lineup changes, with Dave ...read more.
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List Stats

100 votes
82 listings
6 years, 197 days old

Top Remixes (15)

1. Nirvana
2. Foo Fighters
3. Goo Goo Dolls
Stonerquist
1. X Japan
2. Oasis
3. Scorpions
Bigsamehada
1. Nirvana
2. Pantera
3. Metallica
Disturbedpotato

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