311: Fusion of Sound


Brandon Moss

All songs start with an idea—one that bursts into the music we love and share around the world.

Brandon Moss, Web Editor

In the 90s, a variety of music genres hit the masses. Today, most remember the pop songs such as Britney Spears’ Baby One More Time, R&B hits such as TLC’s Waterfalls, and indefinable pop crossovers such as Beck’s Loser and Outkast’s Hey Ya. Grunge, a sometimes sludgy, sometimes beautiful sound, was also surprisingly popular during this period, but the most astonishing spike in popularity of a genre was alternative rock as a whole. Along with the unique heavier sounds of grunge artists such as Pearl Jam and Soundgarden, other types of music witnessed a rise in popularity. Radiohead became a huge success with their songs, Paranoid Android and Creep, while Sublime, a complete opposite to Grunge, became a relaxer’s musical paradise with a masterfully fused reggae/hip-hop/rock mix. An abundance of one-hit wonders—bands that only had one widely successful song—hit the CD players during this decade; from dance hits like Chumbawamba’s Tubthumping to alternative rock songs like Crash Test Dummies’ Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm. One of the greatest and most talented bands to reach popularity was 311.

311 was not a one-hit wonder band; rather, it was one of the more successful bands of the 90s, and more importantly, a band that still makes great music today. 311 is set apart  in that the other bands either had key members die or ceased making commercially and critically successful music. 311 only grew stronger with their albums, with each one never disappointing. They successfully combined funk, alternative, hard rock, hip-hop, rap, reggae, and ska. They have a song for any mood; for relaxation, listen to Amber. For a good mood, Sunset in July is the perfect companion. If something at work or school brings anger, play Down and enjoy. They play in Atlanta yearly, so watch out for a great show and unbelievable music.

A star (*) indicates my personal favorites.

  1. Five of Everything
  2. Beautiful Disaster *
  3. I’ll Be Here Awhile (Acoustic)
  4. Sunset in July *
  5. Stealing Happy Hours *
  6. Come Original
  7. Down
  8. Don’t Tread On Me *
  9. Homebrew
  10. All Mixed Up