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When I was seven, “Quit Playing Games (with My Heart)” by the Backstreet Boys was the only song in the world. The ballad, a cloying and catchy Max Martin written and produced song, was the first US single released from the Backstreet Boys. While simple, mindless lyrics like, “Sometimes I wish I could turn back time, impossible as it may seem” don’t quite make for an epic pop song, they do get stuck in...
In the 90s, I was the ages of seven through seventeen. Which is to say, I was more or less aware of things: TV, radio, clothes, nightly news, sports—the tenor of the decade. Some of these things I dug, like neon on my shorts and T-shirts. Also, when the Twins won the '91 World Series, that was a fucking thrill. I jumped up and down and yelled in my living room for a while that...

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