New Music Tuesday–Smells Like Teen Spirit

Being a teenager in the 90’s was tough. When the entire world was against us we didn’t have Twitter to channel our tantrums into dramatic status updates and hashtag acronyms at each other. We did teen angst properly–by drinking cheap beer in a field and listening to angry, tortured pop songs. IN THE RAIN. While present day adolescents get to blow off steam to the likes of Taylor Swift, One Direction and Justin Bieber, I can’t help but think that the poor little delinquents are missing out…

Nothing like the howling vocals of fierce females like Alanis and Ani to stir the soul and express the rage. These gems will take you right back to lumberjack plaid, My So-Called Life reruns, and Lilith Fair:

From those haunting vocals to the unfiltered lyrics, Alanis really knew how to tap into the bitchiness in us all. We could probably just listen to an entire Alanis playlist to get our full fix of angst, but if I had to choose just one song, this would obviously be it.

 

Shirley Manson was not the chick to mess with. When she told you about yourself, you had no choice but to listen. No. Apologies. Given.

 

Gwen Stefani’s always been a kickass kind of woman. But way back before the solo career and The Voice, the “Hollaback girl” was more grit than glitz. This little number was all about heartbreak, without being too sensitive. Leave it up to Gwen to keep it gangsta’!

 

C’mon, who didn’t want to belt this out to their stupid ex? Or at least in the mirror.

 

Bluesy and soulful, Tracy Chapman had a knack for letting us indulge our emo side and tap our feet at the same time.

 

This song gets top marks for opening with ‘I hate the world today’. Singing about being a bitch, lover, child and mother all at once while simultaneously throwing the curveball that ‘you know you wouldn’t want it any other way’ made this tune irresistible to hysterical girls wanting to proudly show off the B word worldwide.

 

Right in tune with Meredith Brooks’s “Bitch,” Ani Difranco was all about rejecting conformity and expectations. Nobody puts Ani in the corner!

 

A mid-90s hit, “Torn” is still one of those songs you’ll probably randomly hear in rotation somewhere like Kohl’s.