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80's Rock Bands Jumping on the Grunge Bandwagon

The early 1990's - a time of a massive music revolution. In the span of days, hedonistic and bloated 80's rock music was turned on its head - from heavy rotation on MTV to the sale-back bins. Grunge rapidly became the sound of my generation, and bands like Winger, Cinderella, Whitesnake, etc faded away. But for a short time there, 80's rock bands were clamoring to stay relevant and updated their sound. The following is a list of 80's rock bands that successfully jumped on the grunge bandwagon, changing their sound to fit the times and actually releasing a decent album in the process.
1Anthrax
Sound of White Noise


Say what you want about the John Bush era, but this album was awesome! To me, this is the best Anthrax album ever. Gone were the dated vocals of Joey belladonna (that's right, I'm not a fan). In were the more introspective and powerful vocals of John Bush.
2Skid Row
Subhuman Race


This album was a valid attempt at keeping up with the sound of the times. Slave to the Grind, the release prior, was a powerhouse...stood on its own. But this album definitely attempted to incorporate more grunge-like vibes. The track Eileen is a good example, as this song has a strong AIC vibe.
3Metallica
Load


I lived this change. It was a truly embarrassing morph from the Metallica of the Black Album and prior to this. The hair cuts were one thing...but the imagery in the album and other antics pushed it the next level and reinforced that this was a change for the worse. But honestly, upon a recent listen, the songs on Load were not bad and several still hold up. Looking back, they may have taken just as much influence from Corrosion of Conformity as they did grunge.
4Motley Crue
Motley Crue


Not a bad album. And props to John Corobi for drastically changing the direction of the ship, and resultantly taking an extreme amount of heat and ridicule. But this album is certainly not vintage Crue.
5Warrant
Dog Eat Dog


I remember having this on tape. Huge difference between the tone on this album and Cherry Pie. Songs including Machine Gun and The Hole in My Wall were great hard-edged numbers.
6Queensryche
Hear in the Now Frontier


I never really saw Queensryche as a typical 80's rock band. They always had a different sound, which was more introspective and progressive. However, they fully jumped on the grunge bandwagon on this album. Not a terrible listen, but also not very representative of the band.
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