Top 10 Alt-Rock Videos From 1989
Indie music officially left the underground in mid 1988, when ‘Billboard’ finally gave modern rock its own weekly airplay chart. It would be another few years before alt-rock properly entered the mainstream and shared space on Top 40 radio with Madonna, Mariah Carey and TLC. Still, several of 1989’s top modern-rock songs managed to cross over. Here are the year’s biggest alt-rock videos.
The Cure, Fascination Street
The Cure’s 1989 album ‘Disintegration’ made them huge stars, and its first single topped the modern-rock chart for a whopping seven weeks. It’s the band’s biggest hit.
XTC, ‘The Mayor of Simpleton’
These post-punk heroes could be all artsy and difficult. But they could also be all poppy and charming, like on this No. 1 hit from their excellent ‘Oranges & Lemons’ album.
Love and Rockets, ‘So Alive’
‘So Alive’ is the biggest hit by this British group that stemmed from the remains of ’80s goth heroes Bauhaus. The slinky song spent five weeks at No. 1.
The B-52’s, ‘Love Shack’
The New Wave giants’ career was pretty much DOA when ‘Love Shack’ resurrected it in 1989 with one of the group’s best-ever songs. It also hit No. 3 on the pop charts.
Ian McCulloch, ‘Proud to Fall’
The first and biggest solo hit by the former Echo & the Bunnyman frontman sounds a lot like something his former band would have recorded. A bit more cheery, though.
Kate Bush, ‘Love and Anger’
Surprisingly, ‘Love and Anger’ is Bush’s only No.1 modern-rock song. It comes from the great ‘Sensual World’ album and stayed at the top for four weeks.
The B-52’s, ‘Channel Z’
‘Love Shack’ wasn’t the first single released from the B-52’s comeback album ‘Cosmic Thing.’ The title track was. And then came ‘Channel Z,’ which reached No. 1 before ‘Love Shack.’
Hoodoo Gurus, ‘Come Anytime’
These Australian rockers didn’t make much noise on the modern-rock chart, but ‘Come Anytime’ (from the excellently titled ‘Magnum Cum Louder’ album) managed to hit No. 1.
Camper Van Beethoven, ‘Pictures of Matchstick Men’
These college-rock heroes kicked off their major-label record deal with a cover of a 1968 semi-hit by British hippie group Status Quo.
Say what you will about R.E.M.’s gooey No. 1 hit ‘Stand.’ We happen to like it. We also can understand the words, which is not the case with 95 percent of the band’s other ’80s material.