Nirvana was an American rock band formed in Aberdeen, Washington, in 1987. Founded by lead singer and guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic, the band went through a succession of drummers, most notably Chad Channing, and then recruited Dave Grohl in 1990. Nirvana's success popularized alternative rock, and they were often referenced as the figurehead band of Generation X. Their music maintains a popular following and continues to influence modern rock culture.
Green Day is an American rock band formed in the East Bay of California in 1987 by lead vocalist and guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong, together with bassist and backing vocalist Mike Dirnt. For most of the band's career, they have been a power trio with drummer Tré Cool, who replaced John Kiffmeyer in 1990 before the recording of the band's second studio album, Kerplunk (1991). Touring guitarist Jason White became a full-time member in 2012, but returned to his touring role in 2016. Before taking its current name in 1989, Green Day was called Sweet Children, and they were part of the late 1980s/early 1990s Bay Area punk scene that emerged from the 924 Gilman Street club in Berkeley, California. The band's early releases were with the independent record label Lookout! Records. In 1994, their major-label debut Dookie, released through Reprise Records, became a breakout success and eventually shipped over 10 million copies in the U.S. Alongside fellow California punk bands Bad Religion, the Offspring, Rancid, NOFX, Pennywise and Social Distortion, Green Day is credited with popularizing mainstream interest in punk rock in the U.S.
Aerosmith is an American rock band formed in Boston in 1970. The group consists of Steven Tyler (lead vocals), Joe Perry (guitar), Tom Hamilton (bass), Joey Kramer (drums) and Brad Whitford (guitar). Their style, which is rooted in blues-based hard rock, has also incorporated elements of pop rock, heavy metal, glam metal, and rhythm and blues, and has inspired many subsequent rock artists. They are sometimes referred to as "the Bad Boys from Boston" and "America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band". The primary songwriting team of Tyler and Perry is often known as the "Toxic Twins".
Perry and Hamilton, originally in a band together called the Jam Band, met up with Tyler, Kramer, and guitarist Ray Tabano, and formed Aerosmith; in 1971, Tabano was replaced by Whitford. They released a string of multi-platinum albums starting with their eponymous debut in 1973, followed by Get Your Wings in 1974. The band broke into the mainstream with Toys in the Attic (1975) and Rocks (1976). Draw the Line and Night in the Ruts followed in 1977 and 1979. Throughout the 1970s, the band toured extensively and charted a dozen Hot 100 singles, including their first Top 40 hit "Sweet Emotion" and the Top 10 hits "Dream On" and "Walk This Way". By the end of the decade, they were among the most popular hard rock bands in the world and developed a following of fans, often referred to as the "Blue Army". Drug addiction and internal conflict led to the departures of Perry and Whitford in 1979 and 1981. The band did not fare well and the album Rock in a Hard Place (1982) failed to match previous successes.
The Beatles were an English rock band, formed in Liverpool in 1960, that comprised John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. They are regarded as the most influential band of all time and were integral to the development of 1960s counterculture and popular music's recognition as an art form. Rooted in skiffle, beat and 1950s rock 'n' roll, their sound incorporated elements of classical music and traditional pop in innovative ways; the band also explored music styles ranging from folk and Indian music to psychedelia and hard rock. As pioneers in recording, songwriting and artistic presentation, the Beatles revolutionised many aspects of the music industry and were often publicised as leaders of the era's youth and sociocultural movements.
Queen are a British rock band formed in London in 1970 by Freddie Mercury (lead vocals, piano), Brian May (guitar, vocals) and Roger Taylor (drums, vocals), later joined by John Deacon (bass). Their earliest works were influenced by progressive rock, hard rock and heavy metal, but the band gradually ventured into more conventional and radio-friendly works by incorporating further styles, such as arena rock and pop rock.
Before forming Queen, May and Taylor had played together in the band Smile. Mercury was a fan of Smile and encouraged them to experiment with more elaborate stage and recording techniques. He joined in 1970 and suggested the name "Queen". Deacon was recruited in February 1971, before the band released their eponymous debut album in 1973. Queen first charted in the UK with their second album, Queen II, in 1974. Sheer Heart Attack later that year and A Night at the Opera in 1975 brought them international success. The latter featured "Bohemian Rhapsody", which stayed at number one in the UK for nine weeks and helped popularise the music video format.
Coldplay are a British rock band formed in London in 1997. They consist of vocalist and pianist Chris Martin, guitarist Jonny Buckland, bassist Guy Berryman, drummer Will Champion and creative director Phil Harvey. They met at University College London and began playing music together from 1997 to 1998, initially calling themselves Starfish.
Arcade Fire is a Canadian indie rock band from Montréal, Quebec, consisting of husband and wife Win Butler and Régine Chassagne, alongside Richard Reed Parry, Tim Kingsbury and Jeremy Gara. The band's current touring line-up also includes former core member Sarah Neufeld and multi-instrumentalists Paul Beaubrun, Dan Boeckner and Eric Heigle. Each of the band's studio albums features contributions from composer and violinist Owen Pallett.
The White Stripes were an American rock duo from Detroit formed in 1997. The group consisted of Jack White and Meg White. After releasing several singles and three albums within the Detroit music scene, the White Stripes rose to prominence in 2002 as part of the garage rock revival scene. Their successful and critically acclaimed albums White Blood Cells and Elephant drew attention from a large variety of media outlets in the United States and the United Kingdom. The single "Seven Nation Army", which used a guitar and an octave pedal to create the opening riff, became one of their most recognizable songs. The band recorded two more albums, Get Behind Me Satan in 2005 and Icky Thump in 2007, and dissolved in 2011 after a lengthy hiatus from performing and recording.
The Strokes are an American rock band formed in New York City in 1998. The band is composed of lead singer and songwriter Julian Casablancas, guitarists Nick Valensi and Albert Hammond Jr., bassist Nikolai Fraiture, and drummer Fabrizio Moretti. They were a leading group of the early-2000s indie rock revival.
Tears for Fears are an English pop rock band formed in Bath, England, in 1981 by Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith. Founded after the dissolution of their first band, the mod-influenced Graduate, Tears for Fears were associated with the new wave synthesizer bands of the early 1980s, and attained international chart success.
The band's debut album, The Hurting (1983), reached number one on the UK Albums Chart, and their first three hit singles – "Mad World", "Change", and "Pale Shelter" – all reached the top five in the UK Singles Chart. Part of the MTV-driven Second British Invasion of the US, their second album, Songs from the Big Chair (1985), reached number one on the US Billboard 200, achieving multi-platinum status in both the UK and the US. The album contained two Billboard Hot 100 number one hits: "Shout" and "Everybody Wants to Rule the World", both of which reached the top five in the UK with the latter winning the Brit Award for Best British Single in 1986.
Gorillaz are an English virtual band formed in 1998 by musician Damon Albarn and artist Jamie Hewlett, from London. The band primarily consists of four fictional members: 2-D, Murdoc Niccals, Noodle, and Russel Hobbs (drums). Their universe is presented in music videos, interviews, comic strips and short cartoons. Gorillaz' music has featured collaborations with a wide range of featured artists, with Albarn as the only permanent musical contributor.
Alexisonfire is a Canadian post-hardcore band formed in St. Catharines, Ontario in 2001. The band's members are George Pettit (vocals), Dallas Green, Wade MacNeil, Chris Steele (bass) and Jordan Hastings. The band has won numerous awards, and in Canada their albums have all been certified either gold or platinum.
Bauhaus are an English rock band, formed in Northampton, England, in 1978. The group consists of Daniel Ash (guitar, saxophone), Peter Murphy (vocals, occasional instruments), Kevin Haskins (drums) and David J (bass). The band were originally named Bauhaus 1919 in reference to the first operating year of the German art school Bauhaus, although they shortened the name within a year of formation. One of the pioneers of gothic rock, Bauhaus were known for their dark image and gloomy sound, although they mixed many genres, including dub, glam rock, psychedelia, and funk.
Their 1979 debut single, "Bela Lugosi's Dead" is considered one of the harbingers of gothic rock music and has been influential on contemporary goth culture. Their debut album, In the Flat Field, is regarded as one of the first gothic rock records. Their 1981 second album Mask expanded their sound by incorporating a wider variety of instruments—such as keyboards, saxophone and acoustic guitar—and experimenting with funk-inspired rhythms on tracks like "Kick in the Eye". Bauhaus went on to achieve mainstream success in the United Kingdom with their third album, The Sky's Gone Out, which peaked at No. 3 on the UK Albums Chart in 1982. That same year, they also reached No. 15 on the Singles Chart with a standalone cover of David Bowie's "Ziggy Stardust", earning them an appearance on Top of the Pops. During recording sessions for their next album, Murphy fell ill and spent much of his time away from the studio, leaving the rest of the band to compensate for his absence. This created a rift between the singer and his bandmates, culminating in the group's dissolution on 5 July 1983, one week before Burning from the Inside was released. Featuring the hit single "She's in Parties", it would be their final studio album composed entirely of new material for a quarter century.
Bullet for My Valentine, often abbreviated as BFMV, are a Welsh heavy metal band from Bridgend, formed in 1998. The band is currently composed of Matthew Tuck, Michael Paget, Jason Bowld (drums) and Jamie Mathias. Former members include Michael Thomas, Jason James and Nick Crandle; the latter were on bass. They were formed under the name Jeff Killed John and started their music career by covering songs by Metallica and Nirvana. Jeff Killed John recorded six songs which were not released; two of these tracks were reworked later in their career as Bullet for My Valentine. A change of style from that of Jeff Killed John led the band to change their name. In 2002, the band secured a five-album deal with Sony BMG. The band has stated that their music is influenced by classic metal acts such as Metallica, Iron Maiden and Slayer. The band is part of the Cardiff music scene.
Clan of Xymox, also known as simply Xymox, are a Dutch rock band from Nijmegen formed in 1981 best known as pioneers of darkwave music. Clan of Xymox featured a trio of singers and songwriters – Ronny Moorings, Anka Wolbert, and Pieter Nooten – and gained success in the 1980s, releasing their first two albums on 4AD, before releasing their third and fourth albums on Wing Records and scoring a hit single in the United States. Their 1980s releases included synthpop/electronic dance music. The band is still active, continuing to tour and release records with Moorings as the sole remaining original songwriter and singer.
Clan of Xymox were formed in Nijmegen, Netherlands, in 1983 by Ronny Moorings (vocals, guitar) and Anka Wolbert (bass, vocals). A year later, Moorings and Wolbert moved to Amsterdam, releasing the mini-album Subsequent Pleasures as Xymox. The album was limited to 500 copies.
David Robert Jones (8 January 1947 – 10 January 2016), known professionally as David Bowie ( BOH-ee), was an English singer-songwriter and actor. A leading figure in the music industry, he is regarded as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. Bowie was acclaimed by critics and musicians, particularly for his innovative work during the 1970s. His career was marked by reinvention and visual presentation, and his music and stagecraft had a significant impact on popular music.
Bowie developed an interest in music from an early age. He studied art, music and design before embarking on a professional career as a musician in 1963. "Space Oddity", released in 1969, was his first top-five entry on the UK Singles Chart. After a period of experimentation, he re-emerged in 1972 during the glam rock era with his flamboyant and androgynous alter ego Ziggy Stardust. The character was spearheaded by the success of Bowie's single "Starman" and album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, which won him widespread popularity. In 1975, Bowie's style shifted towards a sound he characterised as "plastic soul", initially alienating many of his UK fans but garnering him his first major US crossover success with the number-one single "Fame" and the album Young Americans. In 1976, Bowie starred in the cult film The Man Who Fell to Earth and released Station to Station. In 1977, he again changed direction with the electronic-inflected album Low, the first of three collaborations with Brian Eno that came to be known as the "Berlin Trilogy". "Heroes" (1977) and Lodger (1979) followed; each album reached the UK top five and received lasting critical praise.
The Cure are an English rock band formed in 1978 in Crawley, West Sussex. Throughout numerous lineup changes since the band's formation, guitarist, lead vocalist, and songwriter Robert Smith has remained the only constant member. The band's debut album, Three Imaginary Boys (1979), along with several early singles, placed the band in the post-punk and new wave movements that had sprung up in the United Kingdom. Beginning with their second album, Seventeen Seconds (1980), the band adopted a new, increasingly dark and tormented style, which, together with Smith's stage look, had a strong influence on the emerging genre of gothic rock as well as the subculture that eventually formed around the genre.
Nineteen Eighty-Four is a dystopian social science fiction novel and cautionary tale by English writer George Orwell. It was published on 8 June 1949 by Secker & Warburg as Orwell's ninth and final book completed in his lifetime. Thematically, it centres on the consequences of totalitarianism, mass surveillance and repressive regimentation of people and behaviours within society. Orwell, a democratic socialist, modelled the authoritarian state in the novel on Stalinist Russia and Nazi Germany. More broadly, the novel examines the role of truth and facts within societies and the ways in which they can be manipulated.
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (commonly Alice in Wonderland) is an 1865 English novel by Lewis Carroll. It details the story of a young girl named Alice who falls through a rabbit hole into a fantasy world of anthropomorphic creatures. It is seen as an example of the literary nonsense genre. The artist John Tenniel provided 42 wood-engraved illustrations for the book.
It received positive reviews upon release and is now one of the best-known works of Victorian literature; its narrative, structure, characters and imagery have had widespread influence on popular culture and literature, especially in the fantasy genre. It is credited as helping end an era of didacticism in children's literature, inaugurating a new era in which writing for children aimed to "delight or entertain". The tale plays with logic, giving the story lasting popularity with adults as well as with children. The titular character Alice shares her given name with Alice Liddell, a girl Carroll knew.