10 Greatest Music Albums of the '90s

What are the 10 most influential albums of the 1990s? 

The '90s was a brilliant decade for music. Rap was taken to another level, grunge and indie messed up the rock dynamic, and pop was stronger than ever.  Much of the tackiness from the 80s glam scene was flushed away, and new avenues for musical genres were formed and developed over the 1990s.

In no particular order, here are ten of the greatest albums released in the '90s that had the most influence and significance. Each and every one of these popular albums were real game-changers in their own right.

Nas - 'Illmatic' 

This debut album by Nas was the major influence of what hip hop albums should sound like. “Illmatic” features ten tracks filled with exceptional lyrics and beats. This album also saw Nas with the best producers of the era. "Illmatic" is raw storytelling on a level that was completely new to hip-hop music. This album paved the way for what was to come.

Radiohead - 'OK Computer'

“OK Computer” is still regarded as one of the most important albums ever made. Radiohead shattered the idea of what Britpop was with a level of experimentation in alternative rock few could have seen coming. This album shaped British and American music into the 2000s by creating a standard some might argue has yet to be equalled.  The whole album, from start to finish, is a complete masterpiece, and very few albums have bettered this since its 1997 release.

Dr. Dre - 'The Chronic'

“The Chronic” was as important a release as hip-hop has ever had. Dr. Dre pushed hip hop to new production heights with raw lyrics, catchy beats, and new dimensions to the art of the genre. It was the beginning of rap's time to rule the music world. It also introduced number of talents to the mainstream, including rap’s next great superstar in Snoop Doggy Dogg.

Metallica - 'Metallica'

Better known as “The Black Album,” Metallica’s fifth studio effort was a huge game-changer for heavy metal music. The band moved on from their trash mtal days in the 80s in favour of a more versatile and mainstream friendly sound. The album is regarded as one of the most significant metal albums ever made, when Metallica were at their peak.

Oasis - "(What's the Story)" Morning Glory"

Following on from “Definitely Maybe”, “(What’s the Story) Morning Glory” fulfilled the hype and made Oasis international superstars, and even across the pond too. Huge hits like “Morning Glory,” “Don’t Look Back in Anger’ and the massive hit “Wonderwall” were worldwide anthems overnight, and shot the whole Brit-Pop culture to the skies.

Michael Jackson - "Dangerous"

"Dangerous" is one of Jackson’s best-reviewed albums, and was particularly praised for living up to its name, with edgier beats and lyrical content. This popular record spawned nine singles, including “Heal the World,” and "Black Or White", which would go on to become one of Jackson’s signature songs.

Lauryn Hill - 'The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill'

“The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill” became the neo-soul genre’s biggest release and a staggering blend of singing and rapping that would earn Lauryn Hill ten nominations and five wins at the 41st Annual Grammy Awards. To put it simply, there was no bigger female music artist on the planet at the time of this release.  Hill was untouchable.

My Bloody Valentine - 'Loveless'

“Loveless” is one of the greatest snooze-rock albums of all time, and it would even give bands like Radiohead a good run for their money.  This stunning album accomplishes something rare with its guitar sounds that hadn’t been heard before.

Nirvana - 'Nevermind'

“Nevermind” was the most significant musical revolution of a generation. Kurt Cobain became the voice of music as we knew it, and Nirvana became the biggest rock band in the world, almost overnight. “Smells Like Teen Spirit” took over MTV, and we all began to see the biggest musical moment since the 1960s. And yet, it’s the songwriting that endures, proof that great music with meaningful themes behind it could change the world.

R.E.M. - 'Automatic For The People'

“Automatic For The People” was an album that proved REM were not quite done from their last outing, and this record took the band to another level. “Automatic” was the band’s most refined record.The band had clearly matured, and this was evident in the songwriting.  It's a true classic.

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