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Alt Extravaganza: Jam to Oasis to Rage to Avenged

Three decades of alt-rock heroes play into this week’s DLC tracks, which stretch from a great late-'70s UK punk band to a modern crew of metal dudes. In between comes a landmark political band, and a UK pop institution fronted by two feuding brothers.

Two decades ago The Jam were arguably the most popular band in the UK, a power trio that combined soulful mod swagger with raw punk urgency; frontman Paul Weller remains a UK hero to this day. One of their chart-topping UK singles, “Going Underground,” turns a cynical sentiment into a full-fledged anthem. “Town Called Malice” marks the stronger soul direction that took over toward their career’s end, a Motown-flavored stomp with Paul Weller leading the charge on Hammond organ. Fear not, there’s plenty of good guitar work in there too. 

A live version of Oasis’ “Supersonic" is something you may never hear again, as Oasis imploded just last week: Guitarist Noel Gallagher unceremoniously stomped out of his own band last Friday, claiming he’d never work with brother Liam again. So take the “Supersonic” release as commemoration of those always-entertaining Gallaghers. 

“Guerilla Radio” was released in 1999, a heady year for Rage Against the Machine. That year they performed in South Korea, headlined Coachella, and released their third album on Election Day. The following year they played a guerrilla show outside the Democratic National Convention, and won a hard-rock Grammy for this very tune. 

A prime track from metal band Avenged Sevenfold, “Bat Country” takes its inspiration from gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson, whose landmark Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas includes a scene where Thompson in an altered state hallucinates in the desert and sees manta rays flying overhead. This, we’ll remind you, isn’t necessarily required to turn in an effective performance of this tune.