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Garbage built on the sonic landscapes of My Bloody Valentine, Curve, and Sonic Youth, adding a distinct sense of accessible pop songcraft. The band was the brainchild of producers Butch Vig, Duke Erikson, and Steve Marker, who initially held an informal jam session in Marker's basement, but they eventually recruited vocalist Shirley Manson, who had previously sung with Angelfish and Goodbye Mr. MacKenzie. Vig is a native of Viroqua, Wisconsin, who learned to play piano as a child and drums as a teenager. He briefly attended the University of Wisconsin before pursuing a career in music instead. The first band he joined after leaving college was Spooner, who he played drums for. Also in Spooner was Erikson, who sang and played guitar with the band. Marker was a native of New York who moved to Wisconsin to attend college. He became a fan of Spooner and began recording their songs. Vig left Spooner shortly afterwards, but he kept in touch with the band. After a few years, Spooner became Firetown and Vig played drums in the new outfit. Firetown broke up in the late '80s, without achieving much success. Prior to the formation of Firetown, Vig and Marker bought an eight-track cassette recorder together and set up a makeshift studio in a local warehouse. This studio was dubbed Smart Studios and Vig recorded numerous local punk and alternative bands there. By the late '80s, Smart had become one of the hippest recording studios in America. Many records released on Touch & Go, Sub Pop, and Twin/Tone, among other indie labels, were made at Smart. Vig and Smart broke into the big time in 1991, after he produced Nirvana's Nevermind. Nevermind elevated Butch Vig to the status of a superstar producer, and for the next two years he produced numerous American alternative superstars, including Sonic Youth, Smashing Pumpkins, and L7. Shortly after Vig became a star, he and Marker began playing together, eventually asking Erikson to join them. Hence, Garbage were officially formed in 1993, after Erikson joined the duo. After a year of playing, they hired Shirley Manson after seeing Angelfish on MTV. Manson began her musical career at an early age, joining Goodbye Mr. MacKenzie as a teenager; she played keyboards and sang backing vocals in the band. For the next few years, she toured with the band before leaving to form Angelfish, whom she led through an eponymous 1994 album. Garbage recorded their debut album in late 1994 and early 1995. Their eponymous first album appeared in the fall of 1995 on Almo Sounds. After receiving support from radio and MTV, the album began to climb the charts toward the end of 1995, when the second single, "Queer," received heavy airplay. By the summer of 1996, Garbage had gone gold in the United States, and shortly afterward it achieved platinum status, as "Only Happy When It Rains" and "Stupid Girl" became radio hits. After a brief break, Garbage began work on their second album in the summer of 1997. The record, entitled Version 2.0, was released in May the following year, preceded by the single "Push It." Four years later, they issued a sophisticated third album, Beautiful Garbage, and the first single, "Androgyny," became a moderate radio hit. Bleed Like Me followed in 2005. After touring for Bleed Like Me, the band announced it was going on an extended hiatus. During this time, Vig busied himself with various production projects, including nabbing a Grammy for Green Day's 2009 album 21st Century Breakdown. Also otherwise engaged, Manson purportedly worked on a solo album and made her acting debut on the 2008 season of the Fox television show Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. In 2012, Garbage released their fifth studio album, Not Your Kind of People. The first album of all-new material since 2005's Bleed Like Me, Not Your Kind of People was also their first independent release. Self-released on their own Stunvolume label, it included the lead-off single "Blood for Poppies." The stand-alone single "The Chemicals" was released for 2015's Record Store Day and featured a guest appearance from Silversun Pickups' Brian Aubert. Garbage's sixth album, Strange Little Birds, followed in 2016. Once again self-released, it was a back-to-basics record, recorded in Vig's basement. Their least-produced album to date, it featured little of the obsessive studio tinkering that had characterized their earlier work. It was preceded by the raw, soulful single "Empty," which showcased the emotionally vulnerable approach Manson had taken to the album's lyrics. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Stations Featuring

    Female Rock

    Female Rock
    7 songs

    '90s Alternative

    '90s Alternative
    5 songs

    Movie Tracks

    Movie Tracks
    2 songs

    Late Night Mix

    Late Night Mix
    2 songs

    Adult Alternative

    2 songs

    Adult Rock

    2 songs

    Top Alternative

    2 songs

    Alternative Mix

    2 songs

    Pop Rock

    2 songs

    '90s Pop

    2 songs

    Female Focus

    2 songs

    Relax Trax

    1 song

Albums by

Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Only Happy When It Rains
  3.   Stupid Girl
  4.   #1 Crush
  5.   Push It
  6.   Special
  7.   I Think I'm Paranoid
  8.   Blood for Poppies
  9.   Queer
  10.   Drive You Home
  11.   Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses
  12.   The World Is Not Enough
  13.   Milk
  14.   Empty
  15.   Vow
  16.   I Just Wanna Have Something to Do
  17.   The Trick Is to Keep Breathing
  18.   Supervixen
  19.   Sugar
  20.   Control
  21.   When I Grow Up
  22.   Not Your Kind of People
  23.   Because the Night
  24.   Dumb
  25.   Girl Don't Come
  26.   Beloved Freak
  27.   Automatic Systematic Habit
  28.   Boys Wanna Fight
  29.   Trip My Wire
  30.   Hammering in My Head
  31.   Sometimes
  32.   Tell Me Where It Hurts
  33.   Run Baby Run
  34.   Parade
  35.   Fix Me Now
  36.   Dog New Tricks (The Pal Mix)
  37.   Subhuman
  38.   Teaching Little Fingers to Play
  39.   Magnetized
  40.   Blackout
  41.   Alien Sex Fiend
  42.   Sleep
  43.   On Fire
  44.   Happy Home
  45.   Metal Heart
  46.   Bleed Like Me
  47.   Why Do You Love Me
  48.   Right Between the Eyes
  49.   Bad Boyfriend
  50.   Nobody Loves You
  51.   Breaking up the Girl
  52.   Silence Is Golden
  53.   A Stroke of Luck
  54.   Not My Idea
  55.   You Look So Fine
  56.   Medication
  57.   As Heaven Is Wide
  58.   Kick My Ass
  59.   Butterfly Collector
  60.   My Lover's Box
  61.   Temptation Waits
  62.   Amends
  63.   We Never Tell
  64.   Even Though Our Love Is Doomed
  65.   Night Drive Loneliness
  66.   If I Lost You
  67.   The Chemicals by Brian Aubert
  68.   Felt
  69.   All the Good in This Life
  70.   Stupid Girl (Red Snapper Mix)
  71.   Driving Lesson
  72.   Why Don't You Come Over
  73.   It's All Over But the Crying
  74.   Sex Is Not the Enemy
  75.   Untouchable
  76.   Cherry Lips (Go Baby Go)
  77.   Cup of Coffee
  78.   Til the Day I Die