Alternative Pop/Rock

Alternative Pop/Rock is essentially a catch-all term for post-punk bands from the mid-'80s to the mid-'90s. Though there is a variety of musical styles within Alternative Rock, they are all tied together since they existed outside of the mainstream. In some ways, there are two waves of alternative bands, with Nirvana's success in 1991 acting as a dividing point. In the '80s, most alternative bands were on independent labels; if they were on majors, they didn't receive as much support as most of the label's mainstream acts. During the '80s, alternative included everything from jangle pop, post-hardcore punk, funk metal, punk pop, and experimental rock. After Nirvana's popularity in the '90s, alternative included all of these subgenres, but many of the edges were sanded off because the music was now being marketed as part of the mainstream. Hard rock and punk-derived music were more commercially successful than the left-of-center pop that dominated late-'80s alternative pop/rock, so alternative lost some of its quirkier tendencies in the '90s. Most experimental bands were relegated to indie rock.

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