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7 defining rock and metal songs of a generation: the very best of your favourite 90s bands

Korn: Freak on a Leash

The American rockers are typically considered the pioneers of the nu metal genre the world first went crazy for in the late 90s. In 1998, they released Freak on a Leash, the single that really got them noticed and won them multiple awards for the spectacular video that merged special effects, animation and live action. That album, Follow the Leader, went on to inspire countless new bands following in Korn’s footsteps, but you can see the real thing in the flesh right here at The SSE Arena, Wembley, this December! 

Check out the classic here...Korn - Freak On A Leash


Limp Bizkit: Nookie

Speaking of Korn playing The SSE Arena, Wembley they won’t be here alone, oh no. They’re teaming up with US nu metallers Limp Bizkit for their first joint UK tour since 1997, so you’ll get two influential metal acts for the price of one! Limp Bizkit’s second album, Significant Other, really sent their stock soaring when it sold 16 million copies worldwide, and its first single, the hugely popular Nookie about Fred Durst’s cruel ex-girlfriend, truly went down a storm.   

Watch it here...Limp Bizkit - Nookie


System of a Down: Chop Suey!

When the iconic heavy metal band released their second studio album, Toxicity, in 2001, it quickly went triple platinum, selling nearly 3 million copies in the US alone. Incidentally, the album’s first and arguably most famous single – Chop Suey – remains the third most popular heavy metal song on YouTube.

See the video with over 466m views here...System Of A Down - Chop Suey!


Placebo: Nancy Boy

Thanks to the success of the 1996 classic Nancy Boy, the band’s debut, self-titled album re-entered the UK charts at number five, a healthy improvement from its original number 40 position. Legendary British rock band Placebo are still going strong and actually, now you mention it, they’re dropping by The SSE Arena, Wembley to play a live show this December!

Watch the classic here - PLACEBO - Nancy Boy


Rage Against the Machine: Killing in the Name

So iconic is this track that a fan-led Facebook campaign saw it claim the coveted Christmas number one spot in the charts in 2009, a whopping 17 years after its initial release, unpredictably beating the X Factor single to the top.  

RATM - Killing In The Name Of


Nickelback: How You Remind Me

Another song inspired by a mean ex-girlfriend, this huge tune was named best-selling rock song of the decade – although it just misses being a 90s staple since it was released from the band’s 2001 studio album, Silver Side Up. It was their third album, but Chad Kroeger cites this particular track as finally putting the inimitable Nickelback, who played at The SSE Arena, Wembley earlier this month, firmly on the map.

Nickleback - How You Remind Me


Linkin Park: In the End

When their album Hybrid Theory sold 10 million copies, Californian rock band Linkin Park – named after a park in Santa Monica with the spelling changed slightly so they could afford the domain name – knew they’d made it. The awesome In The End was the biggest track on the album, reaching number 2 in the charts (sadly kept off the top spot by J Lo’s Ain’t It Funny).

Linkin Park - In The End


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If that lot’s not enough head-banging gold for you, 90s Swedish heavy metal icons Opeth are also hitting the stage in November for a landmark ‘evening of Sorcery, Damnation & Deliverance’. And in January, we’ve got a bumper crop of alternative goodness for you all in one night: American band A Day To Remember will be touring their new album, supported by Welsh pop punk fivesome Neck Deep, English emo group Moose Blood and 90s favourites New Found Glory. See you there, rock fans!  

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