Year In Review: 1992
Things were bad on MTV and the radio: Nirvana and Pearl Jam assaulted
our eardrums with Seattle grunge,
self-styled "gangstas" overran hip hop, and Madonna was more focused on her pornographic
coffee table book than on music.
There was some good news in the pop
added politics to their frothy dance-pop without losing their melodic
sense while newcomer Des'ree
brought substantial emotional depth to her largely electronic brand of
R&B. Two singles topped the charts for several months each: Boyz II Men's savvy, sentimental "The End Of The Road" and Whitney Houston's inescapable Dolly Parton-penned "I Will Always Love You."
Australian rockers Midnight Oil served
up a powerhouse live album. Comeback of the year was either the
triumphant reunion of Television
or the countrified rebirth of Janis
But the really great records were off the beaten path: Sonic Youth's
consistently hard-hitting Dirty; Adrian Belew's Inner
Revolution, a one-man Beatlesque tour
de force; and Praxis's restlessly experimental Transmutation, with key
participation from P-Funk alumni Bootsy Collins and Bernie Worrell.
Most 60s and 70s dinosaurs refrained from polluting the airwaves
during the year, but Ringo Starr
and Keith Richards continued to
push their luck, and pseudo-dinosaurs Spinal
Tap completely missed the boat with a new parody album. Public Enemy stumbled badly with a weak
remix album, George Clinton produced a horrendous album for son Trey Lewd, and Babes In Toyland's cynical major label
debut led many to conclude (incorrectly) that Riot Grrrl rock was just
media hype. Thank god
that year's over.
The Latin album of the year was Silvio. (DBW)
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