Published Apr 03, 2014What Is It?
Founded as a knee-jerk reaction to the withdrawn shoegaze and imposing grunge movements, Britpop was a culture that celebrated decadence, glamour, youth and British heritage. The music was brazen, flashy and heavy on pop hooks, using the music of the Kinks, the Beatles, Buzzcocks and the Smiths as influences. Though Suede unknowingly initiated it on the cover of Select magazine, Blur assumed leadership with their second album, Modern Life Is Rubbish, only to kick the doors wide open a year later with Parklife.
Who's doing it?
Blur, Oasis and Pulp were the big three. Elastica, Supergrass, Sleeper, Gene, These Animal Men, the Boo Radleys and controversial poseurs Menswe@r all had their moment.
Where to start?
Pulp's Different Class, Blur's Parklife and Oasis' Definitely Maybe are the movement's masterpieces. But you can't go wrong with Elastica's self-titled LP, Supergrass' I Should Coco and Gene's Olympian.
Artic Monkeys continue the tradition with their small-town, working class perspective, while the Vaccines, Palma Violets and the 1975 are quintessentially British without the flair. Veteran Britpop disciples Kaiser Chiefs released their fifth album, Education, Education, Education & War, on April 1.