Your Guide to the Next Wave of 90s Nostalgia 


In the days following what came to be known unofficially as Pavement Week around here, it pretty quickly set in that no matter how you slice it, four sold-out shows at Central Park, plus another at the Williamsburg Waterfront, is a really big deal. It's multiple nights at Madison Square Garden big. It's Jay-Z big. Justin Bieber big. It's the kind of big those of us who spend most of our time listening to records that won't sell more than a few thousand copies don't get to experience very often.�‚ 

Pavement Week happened not long after Pitchfork wrapped up its (Pavement-topping) 200 Best Tracks of the 90s feature. It happened during the week Weezer announced a string of tour dates where they'll be playing The Blue Album and Pinkerton in their entirety. A week before Juliana Hatfield and Evan Dando would share a stage at the Mercury Lounge. A week before has-been grunge band Soundgarden would release a new album.�‚ 

Lilith Fair came back this summer. Superchunk just released a new record. Jawbox played Fallon. People suddenly seem to be sticking up for En Vogue all the time. In short, the 90s are sort of having a moment right now. And in hopes of keeping it going, here's another batch of relics that are worthy of your nostalgia. Some are more likely than others to wind up with a four-night run at Central Park.

Sure, Blake Schwarzenbach has been slowly reacquainting himself with the scene over the past few years, bumming around town first with The Thorns of Life and now with forgetters, but fans won't be fully satisfied until he gets Jawbreaker back together. They met at NYU in 1988, and then relocated to the Bay Area, where they became one of the most beloved punk bands of the 90s—:their smart, melodic and crushingly romantic songs serving as a wake-up call to a world of kids who didn't know punk rock could be all those things at once. They released three classic albums on independent labels and then promptly imploded after releasing one more classic album on Geffen in 1995.

You know, considering the faux-lumberjack look that's held Brooklyn so firmly in its grasp for the past few winters, it's somewhat surprising that there hasn't been a revival of the twangy, white-man-approved alt-country genre that was so popular for a few years there in the 90s. It was all whiskey and beer bottles and blue collar posing, and it was awesome. I'm thinking there's a really good four-night Central Park run that could happen here: On night one, Whiskeytown would play Stranger's Almanac in its entirety, then nights two, three and four would be Wilco doing Being There, Son Volt doing Trace, and Uncle Tupelo doing No Depression or, really, whatever the fuck they feel like doing. �‚ 

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