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Ministerul Educaiei, Cercetrii, Tineretului i Sportului

Colegiul Naional Grigore Moisil Oneti






Lucrare de atestat
Limba englez
- Sesiunea mai 2012 -




Coordonator,
Prof. Mariana Bereczki
Candidat,
Creu Denisa Mihaela
clasa a XII-a F














1. Argument.........................................................................................................1
2. Introduction.....................................................................................................2
3. The History of Grunge.....................................................................................3
4. Post-grunge.....................................................................................................5
5. Grunge bands..................................................................................................7
5.1. Soundgarden.........................................................................................7
5.2. Alice in Chains......................................................................................8
5.3. Nirvana.................................................................................................9
5.4. Pearl Jam............................................................................................10
6. Final Considerations.....................................................................................11
7. Appendix........................................................................................................12
8. Webliography................................................................................................13








Motto: Grunge is not dead, it's just taking a nap.

I chose to write about grunge because this music genre touched my soul from the first time I
heard it. I still listen to it very much because I consider it a very inspiring type of music. It
really gives me some special sensations and can really make my mood. If I am having a bad or
stressful day, I immediately listen to some Nirvana or Alice in chains, one of my favourite
grunge bands and I instantly feel calmer and relaxed.
It is true that grunge music is not a quiet or calming type of music, but for my it works every
time I need to disconnect from quotidian problems.
Some may say that the grunge artists were just a bunch of creepy teenagers affected by the
bad climate in Seattle. Actually, for me grunge really has a sound that sets it aside from the
rest. Not everyone can listen to it and understand it or feel it the right way. Some may just say
that its just a noisy music full of meaningless words, but for those who really get the grunge
music, they know that it is more than that. Grunge means a lot of feelings and passion.
Since the death of Kurt Cobain, on 5 April 1994, grunge music was not promoted as much.
Despite this, I consider that grunge music did not die, it only faded away or just took a step
back, to be brought back another day by a band that will create as much history as Nirvana
did in their times.

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Grunge music (mostly known as The Seattle Sound) is a subgenre of alternative rock that
emerged during the mid 80s in the American state of Washington, especially in Seattle. Being
inspired by hardcore punk, heavy metal and indie rock, grunge is generally characterized by
heavily distorted electric guitars, contrasting song dynamics, and apathetic lyrics. The grunge
aesthetic is stripped-down compared to other forms of rock music, and many grunge musicians
were noted for their unkempt appearances and rejection of theatrics.
But grunge music became commercially successful in the first half of the 1990s, due to the
release of the albums Nevermind from Nirvana and Ten from Pearl Jam, in 1991. Nirvana had
then a real surprise when they estimated to sell only 500,000 copies, but they actually reached
more than 10 million albums, only in the United States. The success of these bands boosted the
popularity of alternative rock and made grunge the most popular form of hard rock music at the
time. After that, every Grunge band tried to recreate that huge success.
The first person that used the word grunge, to describe his music genre, was Mark Arm (the
vocalist of the Seattle band Mudhoney) in 1981. Arm said years later: Obviously, I didn't make
grunge up. I got it from someone else. The term was already being thrown around in Australia in
the mid-1980s to describe bands like King Snake Roost, The Scientists, Salamander Jim, and
Beasts of Bourbon.
Styles related to Grunge are Alternative Metal, Emo, Garage Punk, Indie Rock, Post-Grunge,
Punk Revival and Stoner Metal.


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In the mid 80s a small movement began in Seattle, Washington. This movement was not actually
lead by Nirvana as many have said when they released the album Nevermind in September 1991,
but actually went back to other Seattle bands like Melvins and Mudhoney. It was due to Nirvana
and Pearl Jam that the movement came to the forefront of mainstream success. By the mid 90s
this movement went into the eyes of the public as a new musical genre called Grunge, a
combination between guitar rock, punk and metal.
Seattle, in the early 80s, was a culturally isolated place. Major bands did not tour Seattle, the live
scene was full with unimportant bands and the weather was truly bad: the fact that it rained a lot
brought people inside together. Or, as the local record producer Jack Endino said, when the
weather's crappy you don't feel like going outside, you go into a basement and make a lot of
noise to take out your frustration. This was a way for
those musicians gathered together to play in order to
entertain themselves and to escape from boredom and the
rain.
Short after this, small independent record companies
came up with the idea to start producing vinyl records for
them which were cheap and abundant. But fanzines kept
grunge enthusiasts informed on the new bands and shows
alongside Jonathan Poneman and Bruce Pavitof from the
label Sub Pop. After convincing Soundgarden, a
relatively unknown local band back then, to record for
them, they soon became a driving force in the movement
that spread all over the country.
In November 1988 Poneman and Pavitof established the
Sub Pop Singles Club which monthly produced limited
editions of singles from local bands, their first song being
Love Buzz from Nirvana, with a thousand copies. After that, other local bands like Green River,
Tad and Mudhoney started recording for Sub Pop and began to be well known on the local scene.
In 1989 British journalist Andy Catlin came to Seattle. Poneman and Pavit escorted him to a
Mudhoney show, showing him around town. The result was a big story in Britain's Melody
Maker titled Seattle, Rock City.
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In September 1991 Nirvana's second album Nevermind hit the shelves. Because it was still a
small local band, no one expected much from this album, but Kurt Cobain suddenly found
himself as the spokesman of Generation X. Nirvana toured Australia and suddenly Grunge was a
part of popular global culture. Once Grunge became such a huge success, Vanity Fair magazine
did a Grunge fashion spread, which appeared on the runway of 7th Avenue New York fashion
shows. Then, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains and Soundgarden were in great demand due to
their popularity. Suddenly grunge artists became big celebrities and the gossips started to appear.
Kim Thayil of Soundgarden was quoted saying: That is what makes pop culture so significant to
all the little consumers out there; they have no interest in history or economics... They are
interested more in gossip and the nature of celebrity.

Grunge concerts were known for being straightforward, high-energy performances. Grunge
bands rejected the complex and high budget presentations of other musical genres, including the
use of complex light arrays, pyrotechnics, and other visual effects unrelated to playing the music.
Therefore, also stage acting was generally avoided. Jack Endino said in the 1996 documentary
Hype! that their primary objective was not to be entertainers, but simply to rock out.
4






Post-grunge is a subgenre of alternative rock that emerged in the mid 90s as a derivative of
Grunge, using the sounds and aesthetic of grunge, but with a more commercially acceptable tone.
The most remarkable bands were Foo Fighters, Nickelback, Candlebox Creed and Matchbox
Twenty.
Even at the height of their popularity, after the release of Nevermind, which brought Grunge to
international attention, Nirvana still experienced increasing problems, partly caused by Kurt
Cobain's drug addiction and growing dissatisfaction with commercial success. The death of
Cobain in April 1994 marked a decline for grunge that year.

Problems of addiction for Layne
Staley of Alice in Chains led to the cancellation of scheduled dates for the band in 1995.

As these
pioneering grunge bands faltered, major record labels began signing and promoting bands that
were emulating the genre. This is how post grunge appeared.
In 1995, former Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl's new band, the Foo Fighters, helped popularize
the genre and define its parameters, becoming one of the most commercially successful rock
bands in the USA, aided by considerable airplay on MTV. Although male bands predominated,
female solo artist Alanis Morissette's 1995 album Jagged Little Pill, labeled as post-grunge, also
became multi-platinum hit.
5

With the first wave of post-grunge bands losing
popularity, bands like Puddle of Mudd, and Nickelback
took post-grunge into the 21st century with considerable
commercial success, abandoning most of the angst and
anger of the original movement for more conventional
rhythms, narratives and romantic songs.
Even though these bands were among the biggest selling
rock artists, which huge commercial success, post grunge
bands were criticized by fans and press for their artistic
limitations and lack of authenticity, in comparison with
original grunge bands.
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Soundgarden is an American grunge band formed in Seattle, Washington in 1984 by singer
Chris Cornell, lead guitarist Kim Thayil and bassist Hiro Yamamoto. Matt Cameron became the
band's drummer in 1986 and bassist Ben Shepherd completely took Yamamotos place as a
bassist in 1990. Soundgarden was one of the seminal bands in the creation of grunge and was one
of a number of grunge bands signed to the record label Sub Pop. Soundgarden was the first
grunge band to sign to a major label
(A&M Records, in 1988).

Soundgarden achieved its biggest
success with the 1994 album
Superunknown, which debuted at
number one on the Billboard (British
magazine) charts and won one Grammy
Award for the singles Black Hole Sun
and Spoonman. In 1997, the band broke
up because of its creative direction.
But, on 16 April 2010 they had a secret reunion
concert in Seattle, this being their first show since
1997.
Soundgarden was a pioneer of the grunge music
genre, which mixed elements of punk rock and
heavy metal into a dirty, aggressive sound.
The band was praised for its technical musical
ability and the expansion of its sound as the band's
career progressed. Heavy yet ethereal, powerful yet
always-in-control, Soundgarden's music was a study
in contrasts said Henry Wilson.
7




Alice in Chains is an American grunge band formed in Seattle, Washington, in 1987 by guitarist
and songwriter Jerry Cantrell and original lead vocalist Layne Staley. Since its formation, Alice
in Chains has released four studio albums, three EPs, two live albums, four compilations, and
two DVDs. The band is known for its distinct vocal style which often included the harmonized
vocals of Staley and Cantrell.
Alice in Chains rose to international fame as part of the grunge movement of the early 1990s,
along with other Seattle bands such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Soundgarden. In 1992 the band
released their album Dirt which was critically acclaimed and has been certified quadruple
platinum. The band also achieved two No.1 Billboard 200 albums (Jar of Flies and Alice in
Chains), 14 top ten songs on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, and eight Grammy Award
nominations.

8




Nirvana was an American grunge band formed by
singer and guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist
Novoselic in Aberdeen, Washington in the year 1987
and lasted until 1994. Their best drummer was Dave
Grohl, who joined the band in 1990.
The band name Nirvana was taken from the Buddhist
concept, which Cobain described as freedom from
pain, suffering and the external world.
In the late 1980s Nirvana established itself as part of
the Seattle grunge scene, releasing its first album
Bleach for the independent record label Sub Pop in
1989. After signing to major label DGC Records,
Nirvana found unexpected success with Smells Like
Teen Spirit, the first single from the band's second
album Nevermind (1991). Following the success of
this album, Nirvana was labeled the flagship band of
Generation X and Cobain hailed as the spokesman of
a generation.
Being one of the most successful and influential
bands of that time, they have sold since they formed
as a band, over fifty million albums all over the
world. Nirvana greatly affected the style of other
grunge bands such as Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, and
Alice in Chains. They split up after their lead singer
Kurt Cobain died in 1994.
Since its debut, the band has sold over 25 million
records in the United States alone, and over 75
million records worldwide.
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Pearl Jam is an American grunge band that formed in
Seattle, Washington in 1990 by vocalist Eddie Vedder,
guitarists Stone Gossard and Mike McCready and bassist
Jeff Ament. Then they added, in 1998, the drummer Matt
Cameron. Stone Gossard played also for Green River,
Mother Love Bone and Temple of the Dog with Jeff
Ament. Pearl Jam is one of the key bands of the grunge
movement in the early 1990s and it is considered one of
the most influential bands of the decade.
The band broke into the mainstream with its debut album
Ten. Over the course of the band's career, its members
became noted for their refusal to adhere to traditional
music industry practices, especially their refusal to make music videos.

Pearl Jam has outlasted many of its contemporaries
from the alternative rock breakthrough of the early
1990s, and is considered one of the most influential
bands of the decade. Allmusic (online music guide
service) refers to Pearl Jam as the most popular
American rock & roll band of the '90s. Rolling Stone
described the band as having spent much of the past
decade deliberately tearing apart their own fame. To
date, the band has sold over 31.5 million records in the
United States and an estimated 60 million worldwide.
This is one of the reasons why Pearl Jam will be
eligible to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of
Fame in 2016.
Compared to other grunge bands of the early 1990s,
Pearl Jams style is noticeably less heavy and harkens
back to the classic rock music of the 1970s and that is
the reason why the bands success has been attributed
to its sound.
10



For a lot of us, music is the therapy of our soul and it comes in various forms: pop, dance, rock,
alternative, grunge, disco, R&B... For me this therapy is Grunge music, because it gives me some
special sensations and can make me smile, laugh or even cry sometimes. Even if it is not a quiet
or calming type of music, for me and a lot of other people Grunge music can disconnect us
from our quotidian problems every time we want. For me grunge really has a sound that sets it
aside from the rest. Not everyone can listen to it and understand it or feel it the right way.
Some may just say that its just a noisy music full of meaningless words, but for those who really
get the grunge music, they know that it is more than that. Grunge means a lot of feelings and
passion.

Mudhoney. Period. Mudhoney
basically is Grunge itself. As the
best grunge band, Mudhoney blows
Nirvana out of the water, damn they
rock so hard. Mudhoney did not
create grunge though. Neither did
Nirvana or The Melvins, like the
other people said. Malfunkshun
created grunge, so be thankful,
people.

The Grungiest song ever is
"Thirteenth Floor Opening" by
Mudhoney. The sound is so dirty in
that song. I love Grunge.

Grunge is what happens when punk and metal meet with the result of passionate vocals and dirty
guitars.
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Adhere to stick to something
Apathetic not at all interested in or enthusiastic about anything and not willing to make any
effort to change things
EP abbreviation for extended play, a record that lasts for about 8 minutes on each side
Gnarled old and twisted and covered in lines
Hail to say publicly how good or important someone or something is
Hark back to something to remember or talk about something that happened in the past
Quadruple four times bigger
Seminal a seminal piece of writing or music is new and different and influences other
literature or music that comes after it
Spokesman someone whose job is to officially represent an organization, for example in
dealing with journalists
Theatrics ways of behaving or of doing something that are intended to make people notice
you rather than to achieve a particular aim


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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grunge
http://www.allmusic.com/explore/style/grunge-d2679
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=grunge
http://www.silver-dragon-records.com/grunge.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post_grunge
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nirvana_(band)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pearl_Jam
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice_in_chains
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soundgarden
http://www.macmillandictionary.com/


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