Eddie Vedder on the cover of Time, 1993. He never wanted to be on the article and hated the magazine for putting him on its cover.
Amongst the pleasant sadness and acoustic happiness of Indie, do you remember the anger and pain that Pearl Jam and Nirvana captured for us? That we held so very dear as the poems that represented us, the “Eighties Babies”. That we reserved for the tape deck of the car, or when we had slammed the door of our room shut, trying to block out the world outside.
The purity of the emotions of our teenage years probably never fully returns. As soon as it peeps out, our self-conciousness brushes it aside. As soon as we are wondering if we should return to when the car we owned mattered less than the music that played inside it, the dishonesty of our current comfort and materialism tells us our ‘cool’ has a different identity. And that we can never go back.
It is in a rare moment of quiet, that I remember those warm evenings, when our generation, blessed as it is to be a cusp of a post-war era, and a globalised one – was torn apart from inside, while there was utter calm on the outside. We shared our values and our beliefs only with a few messiahs who understood. We did not believe in peace. Nor in war. We did not participate in any apocalyptic event, nor were we creatures from a digital, hyperlinked age. But we were angry. And we stayed that way. And now we are belligerent young adults, making choices that the baby boomer does not accept, and more self-conscious and guarded than those born after Windows 95.
The cassette tape, Pulp Fiction and Nike are our totems. Not the muscle car, or the bell-bottom. We saw WordStar come and go, but we remember to respect a command prompt terminal when we see it. And it is time we started knocking on the doors of power, who did not understand the world after The Beatles & The Doors, and never will, and took it back from them. Like we dreamed of, in those angry hot days of 90’s summer. When we believed in ourselves more, and the system not at all.