Garbage Released A New Video, Proving The Dream Of The ’90s Is Alive And Well

As babies born in the 1980s and early ’90s take over media (hey!), we see more and more lists reminiscing on popular cartoons from the ’90s, signature fashion (or anti-fashion) from that era, and of course, flashbacks to the tunes of that time. As a reminder that the spirit of the ’90s is not relegated to the past but presses on through all of stubbornly keeping it alive (while fearing change), Garbage has released a new single called “Empty.”

More than ever before, the Age of Internet has made nostalgia a serious thing. I mean, it always was, but it not feels like as soon as a decade ends, our digitally paced world makes it so that we are shooting into the future faster than ever, and as our necks break from the pace, we’re whipping around behind us to glance back longingly at what just fucking happened as though it was a million years ago, back when we were (5 goddamn minutes) young(er), in a simpler (nope) time (that just happened). I get it: life moves fast, it’s disorienting, death is scary, etc.

While I’m as much of a sentimental sucker as the next person when it comes to strolling down the path of nostalgia, in recent months the barrage of ’90s flashbacks has felt overbearing and recycled (on the internet?! Never!) The revival of grunge babes Garbage, however, is exactly the kind of time-warp I can get behind.

Really, anything that involves Shirley Manson shredding the world’s hearts with her candy-colored hair and searing voice gets an applaud from me. The existence of Garbage as a band, and Manson’s sustained commitment to tackling darker topics lyrically (paranoia, body-dysmorphia, the male gaze, self-harm, being queer) without drowning performances in cartoonish melodrama is such an important contribution to the music world, particularly for female musicians.

Their latest single “Empty” proves that the band still possesses their full arsenal of chemistry and fire, and is ready to remind the world of it.

Indulging in a YouTube rabbit-hole of Garbage videos (and naturally branching out into a broader collection of grunge albums and playlists) feels way less depressing with the knowledge that they’re back together making new music and reviving their sound during their “20 Years Queer” Tour. Now we can enjoy the sounds of 20 years ago while still keeping up with the relevancy of today, which feels like a nice marriage of forward motion and reflection.

The full new album Strange Little Birds will be available June 12th. In the meantime, we have “Empty” to blast while drinking wine out of a mug and pensively staring at the rain while a single teardrop makes its way down our cheek.


For those curious about how the band members themselves feel about the long-coming reunion, I encourage you to read the recent Rolling Stone interview with Shirley Manson, it gives a balanced look into the way the band formed and how they’ve evolved as artists.