Albums Celebrating Their 30th Birthday in 2024

Some of your favorite albums are celebrating their “Dirty Thirty” birthday in 2024, and it’s the best thing ever! From the grunge movement that defined the 1990s to a few surprising contenders that came out of nowhere and changed the sonic landscape as we know it, 1994 was a pivotal time for all types of music enthusiasts. Check out these albums that have stood the test of time, and deserve the ultimate round of applause as they go into their 30th year.

Blue by Weezer

Can you believe that it’s been three decades since we were exposed to the absolute bop that is “Buddy Holly?” To put things into perspective, the Weezer song’s music video blew up when it was released as a bonus media file alongside Microsoft’s original release of Windows 95. Enter the “cries in millennial” meme.

In all seriousness, Weezer’s debut album was a geek rock masterpiece that forgoed the grunge aesthetics of the time in favor of more melodic, upbeat alternative rock tracks. People worldwide basked in singles like “Say It Ain’t So'' and “Undone - The Sweater Song,” both of which helped establish Weezer as the unconventional rock stars they remain to this day.

Weezer are as prolific today as they were 30 years ago. They have some 2024 dates scheduled with the Smashing Pumpkins - details here.

Dummy by Portishead

“Trip hop” was born when Portishead released their debut album in 1994, with the English group putting out a disruptive fusion of hip-hop, alternative rock, and electronica. These haunting and atmospheric soundscapes exposed the world to Beth Gibbons' charismatic vocals and Geoff Barrow's state-of-the-art production techniques. And simply put, the listeners liked what they heard.

Tracks like “Numb,” "Sour Times" and "Glory Box" captured a mix of melancholy and mystique, drawing listeners into a world of emotional depth. "Dummy" not only defined the trip-hop genre but also challenged conventional notions of music production, and the influence of this Mercury Music Prize winner has stood the test of time. Three decades, to be precise.

Portishead performed a rare 5-song set in May of 2022 for a benefit, and not since. Last month the band reissued a remastered and expanded version of Roseland NYC Live.

Smash by The Offspring

Your favorite Orange County punks came into their own in 1994 with Smash, one of the defining albums of the 1990s punk rock movement. It was right there next to Green Day's Dookie in terms of bringing the genre to the mainstream, and we’re forever grateful for hit singles like “Come Out And Play,” “Self Esteem,” and “Gotta Get Away.”

How many of these tracks can you still sing word for word, while imagining yourself thrashing along with a mohawk at some of the best The Offspring concerts of the 1990s? It was a wonderful time to be a punk music fan as the band showcased their knack for social commentary and sublime guitar riffs. And while they continue to release the best punk rock music to this very day, we’ll always have a special place in our hearts for Smash.

The Offspring wrapped the Let The Bad Times Roll tour in October and have tons of festival dates scheduled for next year - see them all here.

Dookie by Green Day

As Dookie celebrates its 30th birthday in 2024, we can’t help but look back on the profound impact of Green Day’s major label debut. It’s included on nearly every publication’s “Best Albums of the 1990s” list, if not considered one of the greatest albums of all time. Not to mention, the project is widely considered to be the catalyst for the mainstream success of punk rock during this decade.

Blink 182, Fall Out Boy, Sum 41…some of the world’s most prolific bands have bonded over Dookie. And for very good reason. The controversial subject matter and power pop elements of the record set it apart from the sea of grunge bands at the time, and fans and critics alike took notice.

Songs like “Basket Case,” “Welcome to Paradise,” and “When I Come Around” continue to be setlist staples at every Green Day concert. This includes the group’s upcoming 2024 tour, where Billie Joe Armstrong and Co. intend to give Dookie the anniversary love it deserves.

Green Day will be celebrating both 20 years of American Idiot and 30 years of Dookie on next year's tour - dates here.

Sixteen Stone by Bush

While many other bands of the 90s grunge movement, including Nirvana and Pearl Jam, hailed from the rainy streets of Seattle, Bush proved that Britain could get down with grunge, too. Sixteen Stone is the band’s debut that includes some of their biggest singles to this day, including “Comedown” and “Glycerine.” And Gavin Rossdale still performs these tracks with as much precision and power as he did three decades ago.

Sure, Bush has added countless other chart-topping tracks to their musical repertoire over the years. They’ve even experimented with more metal and alternative rock influences over time, including their ninth and latest album, 2022’s The Art of Survival. But Sixteen Stone will forever be at the core of Bush’s incredible rock catalog, and they can’t wait to celebrate its thirtieth birthday in 2024.

Bush recently wrapped their Nowhere to Go But Everywhere tour.

Ready To Die by Notorious B.I.G.

While Notorious B.I.G. is no longer with us, his legacy as one of the greatest rappers who ever lived is well cemented in history. And it all started with his 1994 debut. Featuring hit singles like “Juicy,” “Big Poppa,” and “One More Chance,” the Brooklyn-born hip-hop hero seamlessly blended gritty street narratives with introspective reflections on Ready To Die.

Offering a raw and authentic portrayal of the challenges of the street lifestyle, critics raved about Notorious B.I.G.’s storytelling abilities. And it certainly didn’t hurt that they were effortlessly placed over the most catchy hip-hop hooks.

Rolling Stone ranked Ready to Die at No.1 on their list of the 200 Best Hip-Hop Albums of All Time and referred to it as “the sound of the greatest rapper of all time at the absolute top of his powers.” And it’s a well-deserved statement about Notorious B.I.G. and his most prolific body of work on its 30th anniversary.

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Last updated: 19 Apr 2024, 04:39 Etc/UTC