Shock-tube experiments were performed in order to verify recently developed theoretical models for the evolution of the shock-wave induced Richtmyer-Meshkov instability [Phys. Rev. Lett. 74, 534 (1995)]. Single-mode bubble and spike evolution and two-bubble interaction in both early and late nonlinear stages were investigated in a M∼1.3 Air-to-SF6 shock-tube experiment. Experimental results for the single-mode and two-bubble cases, showing distinct bubble and spike evolution, were found to be in very good agreement with the theoretical model prediction as well as numerical simulations, verifying the key elements of the bubble-merger model used for the prediction of the multimode bubble and spike front evolution.