So much for the afterglow, indeed. While well-advertised career retrospectives from Nirvana and Pearl Jam celebrate those heavyweights of '90s rock, some of the lesser-known bands from that era struggle on, largely forgotten and misunderstood. Case in point: Everclear's Art Alexakis, a frank, empathetic songwriter who delivered consistently melodic anthems about interracial love and drug addiction for a decent-size audience. And up through 2000's Songs From an American Movie, Vol. 1, he understood the potency of up-with-the-little-guy fervor better than any white boy since Springsteen. But ultimately, Everclear seemed permanently underdog-ish -- its tunes perhaps modest to a fault. The inevitable decline in recent years has rendered Everclear a mere footnote, but its new compilation, Ten Years Gone, accurately tells the story of a little band that had its moment in the sun, watched as time passed it by, and never had much of a complaint, thank you very much.
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