Groundbreaking alternative albums that turned 30 in 2022

1992 was an amazing year for popular music.

I was 12 at the time, and discovered all of this music in later years (some, like Dirty, only recently), but nevertheless a huge portion of my all time favourite music was released that year.

Nevermind, Nirvana

There’s not too much I can say about this that the world doesn’t already know. Nirvana changed music with Nevermind – not just their genre. It’s probably in my top five albums of all time, despite there being one or two tracks I’m not too keen on. It’s actually the slickest production we got from Nirvana, and it took grunge to new levels of polish.

Dirty, Sonic Youth

Sonic Youth are a fairly niche band, but their brand of laissez-faire dirty rock has stood the test of time. This album represents Sonic Youth at their prime and is my goto for a dose.

Broken, NIN

An under recognised musical and auditory genius, Trent Reznor created this album to give a voice to his pain, which you can hear fairly unambiguously. Despite it being hard listening at times, like all NIN albums (this is actually an EP), it’s also subtly intriguing, and good for a deeper listen, like all NIN albums. This is very much a concept album, rather than a collection of tracks.

Experience, The Prodigy

I remember listening to this for the first time in around 1994, two years after it came out. This hypnotic collection of highly collaged jungle beats laden with techno hooks singlehandedly kindled my interest in electronic music and beats.

Rage Against the Machine, RATM

Containing the life-changing Killing in the Name of. One song doesn’t make an album though, and the other tracks here are varied and just as good, if not as anthemic.