Blew Our Minds With: Taking a flaming sword to hair metal with Nevermind. Even at their most overproduced and tuneful, Nirvana were a breath of fresh air into the fart-filled room that was early-1990s hard rock. The self-consciously difficult follow-up In Utero set new standards for how loud and abrasive a mainstream rock band could be. If you like being able to see the Pixies and the Stooges live and in person, thank the ghost of Kurt Cobain.
Died When: Courtney Love paid Il Duce to whack him. Kidding. Dude ate a gun.
If He Had Lived: He’d be holed up in a Northampton, Massachusetts, basement with Thurston Moore working on some free jazz/noise guitar project you’d hate.