Music History

Twenty Years Ago Today, The Offspring Released SMASH

Jeezus.  Really?  A quick check of Wikipedia (and Epitaph Records) confirms it.  SMASH hit the stores on April 8, 1994.

Chances are you didn’t remember the day it was released.  First, Offspring was an unknown indie punk band from Orange County. They hadn’t exactly set the world on fire.  And on April 8, 1994, we were occupied by other news.

Then again, it was because of Kurt Cobain’s death that the Offspring had a chance.  Grunge had started to get tired and a punk revival was afoot.  With Kurt gone, music fans started in earnest to look for something new.  They found it in bands from California like Rancid, Green Day and The Offspring. Dexter Holland and Brett Guerwitz had this reminiscence about the album in Rolling Stone.

SMASH was massive.  It’s sold somewhere north of 20 million copies, making it the biggest-selling indie record of all time.

This was my favourite from the record.

The Offspring will perform the album in its entirety on tour this summer.  Then this August, Epitaph will release a 20th anniversary edition of the record.  I just got this email:

– LP version containing the original 14 album tracks newly remastered on 180-gram vinyl
– CD version containing the original 14 album tracks from the most recent remastering
– Restyled album package artwork
– Large format 24 page booklet featuring never before seen archive photos by Lisa Johnson
– Firsthand recollections and quotes from the band and others telling the story of that historic timeIn addition to special 20th Anniversary merchandise, the band are also offering a “collector’s box” combo as a companion piece to the Smash 20th Anniversary Edition.  The box will feature both the CD/Vinyl package and a curated collection of commemorative items including a custom wood box, art print, photo prints, pin, patch, replica pass and guitar pick.  A pre-order for is available now via – for the first 250 ordered, the art print will be on fine art linen canvas, numbered and signed by the artist and band.  All orders placed in the first 24 hours will receive a special hand-stamped first day of release card as well.


Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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9 thoughts on “Twenty Years Ago Today, The Offspring Released SMASH

  • “It’s sold somewhere north of 20 million copies” – about 19999988 of those copies eventually ended in used record bins all over the planet (i am assuming the band members and their folks kept their copies)

    • …and the members of the band couldn’t give a rat’s what you did with it after you gave them your money.

      • Sure, they are horrible musicians that happen to be wealthy,

        • Bitter much? What a crybaby! You’re so pathetic it makes me laugh.

          • Who’s bitter? Fair play to them. They’re not the first musicians whose fame outstripped their ability, nor will they be the last. That’s the “business” part of the music business.

      • The part where you cry about them making money makes you sound bitter. Regarding their fame outstripping their ability, that’s your opinion obviously. You just seem to be awfully angry about something that shouldn’t bother you this much.

        • I think you try to interpret beyond what’s written. Far beyond. As I stated explicitly (not how I “sound”, but what I actually wrote), Fair play to them.

  • Wow! It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years. My 16 and 20 year old sons love Offspring. Frankly, I do too! I mean, where do you think they first heard the band? I don’t think it’s fair to say that the only reason Offspring had a chance was because of Kurt’s death though. There were plenty of people, as recently as yesterday, who stated that they believe Kurt killed himself because he felt he had nothing more to say with his music. There are those who believe Nirvana’s popularity was on the decline. That people in general were getting tired of Grunge. I don’t necessarily agree with these views, but sales, according to what I read, of “In Utero” were 15 million worldwide, where sales of “Nevermind” were 31 million. Reviews of In Utero claimed the album was a drastic departure from Nevermind. Even the band were said to be, not fully satisfied with the sound. Eventually the group hired Scott Litt to make minor changes to the album’s sound and remix the singles “Heart-Shaped Box, and “All Apologies”.
    But this is supposed to be about Offspring. A couple of my favorites are “Self Esteem”, Why Don’t You Get A Job?”, “She’s Got Issues”, “Pretty Fly”, “Days Go By”, “Come Out And Play”, “Bad Habit”, “The Kids Aren’t Alright”, and “Gone Away”. There are too many to mention really. Even though I…just…did. As far as those first two posters, what’s your problem? Is it wrong to make money in your chosen profession? What makes you say the band “couldn’t give a rat’s”…? Are they supposed to come to your house and thank you personally or something? Unrustle your Jimmies, dudes! By the way, the song and video “Pretty Fly”, is seriously funny! I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love it.

  • The Offspring were marginally talented musicians who were able to write a catchy poppy song, that happened to be released at just the right time. Their success was deserved, but they did become a little over rated, and much like Sugar Ray, became a parody of themselves, re-writing the same formulaic songs over and over. Congrats to them on their success, but not surprised in anyway that they had no staying power.


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