Now That’s What I Call the 1990s focuses on the decade’s second half, splitting its time between pop songs and the alternative music that followed in grunge’s footsteps. Pearl Jam and other hard-edged bands are absent from this compilation; instead, slicker groups like Live (“I Alone”) and Collective Soul (“Shine”) represent the wave of mainstream rock that swept through the Clinton era, with Everclear (“Father of Mine”) and Sublime (“What I Got”) thrown in for good measure. Des’ree’s “You Gotta Be” and New Radicals’ “You Get What You Give” help anchor the album’s pop side, while the inclusion of Edwin McCain’s “I’ll Be” is a reminder that the decade also spawned many an omnipresent wedding song. Ignoring grunge, Euro-dance, and teen pop makes this a narrow-minded compilation, but for those who like the aforementioned songs, Now That's What I Call the 1990s is an easy way to get them all in one place.
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AllMusic Review by Andrew Leahey