Classic rock veterans were faced with a changing of the guard in 1993, as the growing grunge revolution altered the look and sound of popular music.

Elvis Costello, David Bowie and Billy Idol were among those stretching out creatively with varied results. Duran Duran, on the other hand, further embraced and experimented with technology, coming out on the winning side with a major return to form that caught some music fans by surprise.

Classic rock’s veteran class, including Billy Joel, Paul McCartney and John Mellencamp all trotted out new chapters -- though for the Piano Man, his album triggered an unexpected decision.

Poison, Anthrax and Scorpions were among those who had perhaps the roughest road. How they each navigated their own individual challenges made the resulting music an especially interesting listen.

Sting released the biggest album of his post-Police catalog, while Motley Crue frontman  Vince Neil embarked on a solo career of his own. Meanwhile, Meat Loaf delivered perhaps the most unexpected comeback album of the era.

New bands also made their voices heard in 1993. Radiohead and Tool were just a couple of notable artists who released their debut albums that year. Meanwhile, Nirvana and Pearl Jam each found ways to follow their monumental debut releases, without suffering the dreaded sophomore slump.

Of course some veterans, such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, opted to keep things business as usual. The Southern rock band ultimately made five albums in the ‘90s, current trends be damned.

We’ve selected 30 notable albums from 1993, ordered chronologically. Read on to learn more about each one.

30 Albums Turning 30 in 2023

Gallery Credit: Matt Wardlaw

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