Smashing Pumpkins

From: Chicago, Illinois

Active: 1990-2000 with the lineups I'm familiar with

I first heard them: in the early '90s, but I honestly don't know which song I heard first. Either "Rhinoceros", "Drown", or "Cherub Rock", I think.

Sound: Ambitious, often pretentious, sometimes unlistenable — Billy Corgan's voice is an acquired taste that I never entirely acquired — but when those forty layers of guitar overdubs worked, or even when he just hit upon a particularly cool riff, the Pumpkins really had something.

Further listening: Oh, yes. I dislike too many Pumpkins songs to give them the top icon, but I like too many to keep this list from becoming stupidly long.

"Drown" (1992)
"Soma" (1993)
"Bodies" (1995)
"1979" (1995)
"Bullet With Butterfly Wings" (1995)
"Porcelina of the Vast Oceans" (1995)
"Ava Adore" (1998)
"Tear" (1998)