The University of Iowa University of Iowa

An Alter-Nineties Universe

By: Vanessa Ruiz

Sure, you lived through the decade, but how much do you really know about ‘90s alternative music?  If the only thing that comes to mind is grungy guitar riffs and oversized flannel shirts, you need to turn on The Lab and tune in to The Alter-Nineties, where host Tony Andrys takes you on a journey through the vast world of ‘90s alternative music.

Though the show’s general theme centers on alternative and indie music from the 1990s, The Alter-Nineties is not at all limited in its scope.  Andrys tries to be as broad-minded as possible in his musical selections, and as a result listeners can hear virtually any musical genre from shoegaze to math rock, with a little electronica thrown in for good measure.  “I hope that by having a theme, but playing many different genres and styles, I can offer something different and unique for KRUI listeners,” Andrys says.  To make the show even more interesting, music is included from earlier artists who influenced the ‘90s sound, as well as contemporary acts like the Black Lips who are impacted by this music today.

With this comprehensive approach to ‘90s alternative music, listeners can expect to broaden their musical horizons, and may even find a new favorite band in the process.  “I designed this show so that fans of other types of music will also be able to enjoy it, and perhaps learn about other styles of music they may not know so much about, “says Andrys.  For example, a fan of the grunge music that was prevalent during the decade may listen to the Alter-Nineties to hear a Nirvana song, but will also have the opportunity to hear some of Nirvana’s lesser-known influences, such as Scratch Acid or Gang of Four, soon after.  Andrys also enhances the listening experience by explaining the relevance of each song he plays, so listeners can not only be exposed to new music, but understand its significance in musical history as well.

Experience ‘90s music in a completely new way with The Alter-Nineties, on The Lab from 4 – 6 PM every Thursday (flannel shirts optional).