120 Minutes

So, I’ve been hearing about the 120 Minutes archive for a while and always kept meaning to check it out, but life has this way of getting in the way. Well I finally snuck in some time and really dove into the archive, and man, it is awesome. I searched for all those videos that I only vaguely remembered and for the most part wasn’t disappointed (though there are a few instances where the linked videos aren’t the actual videos). This took me back to being 12 years old and feeling like I was discovering the world.

I was always the weird kid. I was raised on music and going to concerts instead of going to the movies. I would rock out to Heart and Joan Jett as my mom cleaned the house and I knew all the words to Tom Sawyer before I knew it was a literary reference. Music was always a presence in my life, I may have been the only kid to steal Nirvana Unplugged off my mom or Throwing Copper off my dad. Throughout elementary school I was always a bit different since I never knew what my peers were talking about when they referenced the latest movie and they didn’t understand when I talked about Soul Asylum (Somebody to Shove, Black Gold, Runaway Train) or Nirvana (Sliver, Heart Shaped Box). In middle school, though, I made a friend who loved the music that I did. We obsessed over Green Day, Oasis, Bush, Beck, Silverchair, andFountains of Wayne and every Sunday night from midnight to 2am we would sit on the phone with each other, glued to 120 Minutes. We found out about bands like Live, Nine Inch Nails, Rancid, Better Than Ezra and fell in love with the greatest era of one hit wonders (if you can even call their peak on 120 as a hit) The Cunninghams, Summercamp, Superdrag, and Sponge. We learned our history from T-Rex, The Stone Roses,The Replacements, and Suicidal Tendencies and went back to being kids with the awesome School House Rock reboot.  All of our gossip came from Matt Pinfield and news from Kurt Loder, it was a golden age of being a young sponge desperate for alternative rock.

As a teenage girl bands like Veruca Salt, Garbage, (or this one, or this one) No Doubt,  Elastica, Republica,K’s Choice, Tracy Bonham and Jill Sobule rocked as hard as any dude, provided excellent fashion icons, and independent attitude to spare. I was still an outcast, but I wasn’t alone, I had Sharon, I had these rock stars, I knew that at least somewhere there were people like me. Eventually I started to notice some kids wearingTool, Oasis, and STP T-shirts around school. There was the usual hesitation as we sized each other up but soon enough, everyone checked out as legit, friendships were formed, and mix tapes made and traded.

In my years of enthralment, there were videos from bands who ended up making it big – it was the first time I saw Foo Fighters, Matchbox 20, Third Eye Blind, Bush, Oasis, Blink 182 (there was also more Foo Fighters). There were the ones who almost made it like The Wallflowers, Better than Ezra (Good // In the Blood //Rosealia // King of New Orleans // Desperately Wanting) and Live (Lightning Crashes //  I Alone). There were the ones who who were trying to hold on to past success, Stone Temple Pilots, Soul Asylum, (and moreSoul Asylum) and Faith No More. There were the ones became a weird footnote in music history (the bands that will help you win music trivia night) Primitive Radio Gods, White Town, Reef, Luscious Jackson, Tripping Daisy, Cake (and more Cake), and Rentals. And, most importantly, there were the punk bands I would go on to love, Down by Law, Black Train Jack, Social Distortion, Bad Religion, All, Rancid, MTX, and Unwritten Law.

I kind of fell away from 120 Minutes when they started to go to bands like Barenaked Ladies and Eagle Eye Cherry (though those songs may appear on some guilty pleasures playlists)) and I went to bands like Bad Religion and Rancid. Though is was my springboard, in punk I found the real community that surrounded those bands, not just the theoretical ones that were also staring at their tvs, but 120 Minutes will always hold a place in my heart.

So…I was going to try to weave all these music videos into the narrative…then I realized just how many songs/videos/bands there were. How many of them that I couldn’t cut. How many of these songs are still on all my playlists. So I bring you a few best ofs, 1994 – 1998, what I think of as 120 Minutes golden years.

Enjoy.

1994

  1. Green Day – Longview // Basket Case // When I Come Around
  2. Offspring – Self Esteem // Come Out and Play (Keep ‘Em Separated)
  3. Cracker – Get Off This
  4. Beck – Pay No Mind
  5. Nine Inch Nails – Closer
  6. Rancid – Salvation
  7. Bad Religion – 21st Century Digital Boy // Stranger Than Fiction
  8. Veruca Salt – Seether

1995

  1. Matthew Sweet – Sick of Myself
  2. Oasis – Live Forever
  3. Offspring – Gotta Get Away
  4. Wax – California
  5. Sponge – Molly
  6. Silverchair – Tomorrow // Pure Massacre
  7. Rancid – Time Bomb // Ruby Soho
  8. Toadies – Possum Kingdom
  9. Green Day – Geek Stink Breath // Brain Stew / Jaded // Walking Contradiction
  10. Bad Religion – Atomic Garden  // A Walk
  11. Folk Implosion – Natural One
  12. No Doubt – Just a Girl
  13. Spacehog – In the Meantime
  14. Stabbing Westward – What Do I Have To Do?
  15. Mr. T Experience – Ba Ba Ba Ba Ba
  16. Gravity Kills – Guilty
  17. Bush – Everything Zen // Little Things //  Comedown // Glycerine
  18. Goldfinger – Here in Your Bedroom
  19. Soul Asylum – Just Like Anyone

1996

  1. The Refreshments – Banditos
  2. Butthole Surfers – Pepper
  3. Superdrag – Sucked Out
  4. Stabbing Westward – Shame
  5. Nada Surf – Popular
  6. eels – novocaine for the soul
  7. Local H – Bound for the Floor
  8. Goldfinger – Mabel
  9. Bush – “Swallowed” // Machinehead
  10. Descendents – “I’m The One”
  11. The Queers – “Punk Rock Girls”
  12. Fountains of Wayne – Radiation Vibe

1997

  1. The Verve Pipe – The Freshmen
  2. Kula Shaker – Hey Dude // Kula Shaker – Govinda // Kula Shaker – Hush
  3. Veruca Salt – Volcano Girls // Shutterbug
  4. Wilco – Outtasite (Outta Mind)
  5. The Offspring – Gone Away
  6. Blur – Song 2 // Blur – Beetlebum
  7. Orbit – Medicine
  8. Fountains of Wayne – Sink To The Bottom
  9. Silverchair – Freak
  10. Local H – Fritz’s Corner // Local H – Eddie Vedder
  11. Ben Folds Five – Battle of Who Could Care Less // Brick
  12. Reel Big Fish – Sell Out
  13. The Cunninghams – Bottle Rockets
  14. The Descendents – When I Get Old
  15. The Seahorses – Love Is The Law
  16. Summercamp – Drawer
  17. The Dandy Warhols – Not If You Were The Last Junkie On Earth
  18. Blink 182 – Dammit
  19. Our Lady Peace – Superman’s Dead
  20. The London Suede – Beautiful Ones
  21. Jimmie’s Chicken Shack – High
  22. Cornershop – Brimful of Asha
  23. The Mr. T Experience – And I Will Be With You
  24. No Doubt – Oi to the World

1998

  1. Jimmie’s Chicken Shack – Dropping Anchor
  2. Stabbing Westward – Save Yourself
  3. Eve 6 – Inside Out
  4. Rancid – Bloodclot
  5. Blink 182 – Josie
  6. Unwritten Law – Teenage Suicide // California Sky // Holiday
  7. Ben Folds Five – Song for the Dumped
  8. Our Lady Peace – Clumsy
  9. Placebo – Pure Morning
  10. Stabbing Westward – Sometimes It Hurts
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