1994: The 40 Best Records From Mainstream Alternative's Greatest Year

Green Day, Nirvana, Pearl Jam and 35 other bands who made the word "alternative" lose all meaning

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Dinosaur Jr., 'Without a Sound'
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Courtesy of Blanco y Negro Records32/40

32. Dinosaur Jr., 'Without a Sound'

In 1994, "Feel the Pain" served as the friendliest entry point into Dinosaur Jr.'s spiraling, hazy, feedback-drenched catalogue, hooking newcomers with a clean arrangement and Spike Jonze–directed golf-in-Manhattan music video. ("I was into the aspect of violence and having violence in golf carts — you know, beating people with the clubs," singer-guitarist J Mascis said in the commentary of Jonze's DVD anthology.) Its album, Without a Sound, a disappointment at the time, was the band's least ear-bleeding but most country. Mascis' flat delivery and exhausted songwriting gave listeners the idea of what Uncle Tupelo might sound like had they added a rack of guitar pedals and dropped some of the rural affectation. Nick Murray

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