arriving several months before nirvana's nevermind, the smashing pumpkins' debut album gish, which was also produced by butch vig, was the first shot of the alternative revolution that transformed the rock & roll landscape of the '90s. while nirvana was a punk band, the smashing pumpkins and guitarist/vocalist billy corgan are arena-rockers, co-opting their metallic riffs and epic art-rock song structures with self-absorbed lyrical confessions. though corgan's lyrics fall apart upon close analysis, there's no denying his gift for arrangements. like brian may and jimmy page, he knows how to layer guitars for maximum effect, whether it's on the pounding, sub-sabbath rush of 'i am one' or the shimmering, psychedelic dream-pop surfaces of 'rhinoceros.' such musical moments like these, as well as the rushing 'siva' and the folky 'daydream,' which features d'arcy on lead vocals, demonstrate the smashing pumpkins' potential.