9. Better Man - Pearl Jam
By the end of 1992, Pearl Jam seemed to have everything a band could want and were absolutely miserable about it. Eddie Vedder never really intended to have the kind of overnight success that came with Ten, and the next few years saw the band trying to get as uncommercial as possible, with songs that were either more punk influenced or just plain weird depending on what album you were listening to. There was no room for the poppy stuff now, but Better Man somehow found a way to squeak by regardless.
When the band were initially going through material for their second album Vs., producer Brenden O'Brien was floored by the song, only to be told by Vedder that he was thinking of giving it away to a charity record. The whole thing seemed to go on the backburner for the next few years, but when they were cutting Vitalogy, the freewheeling nature of the sessions gave us a much more power ballad-esque version of the song, complete with a lead from Mike McCready and an organ added in for good measure.
That didn't get it off the hook for Vedder though, who tried to fight tooth and nail for it not being released as a single because it was too commercial. For all of the street cred that Eddie was trying to hold on to from his home in Seattle, this is the kind of musical snobiness that could put some of the more pretentious parts of prog rock to shame.