Alternative Music: Most Popular Articles
Here's how humbug hipsters stuck at family gatherings can commandeer the stereo and not upset the seasonal apple-cart.
10 records, no singing. Well, almost. Ten of the brightest lights shining in post-rock's instrumentalist darkness.
The greatest ever indie record labels.
A look at the ragged instrumentalists and jazz-schooled dorks that've made up post-rock's wordless movement.
The Scottish outfit have had a long (and brilliant) career of sterling pop songs. Here are the ten best.
Biographical history of Animal Collective, the shape-shifting American outfit who's earned a reputation as one of the new millennium's most important musical acts.
We debate the question that has plagued mankind for centuries: what do 'alternative' and 'indie' actually really mean? And is it just the same thing?
From Tune-Yards to Sun Kil Moon to Angel Olsen, here's the highlights of another awesome year in indie music.
Tally your time-signatures! A guide to the essential, indispensable math-rock records.
Slow, sad, frighteningly quiet: a rollcall of classic 1990s LPs from these masters of the spartan.
Dewy, dreamy, distorted guitar. Mumbled, barely-there vocals. It's ten classic shoegaze LPs, from MBV on down...
Home taping didn't kill music, it revolutionized it. Here's 10 classic home-made records committed straight to analogue tape.
West Germany in the 1970s was a fertile time for progressive, mind-altering music.
Ever wondered where's the best place to start for a Fall neophyte?
The radical records that broke the mold, moved music forward, and influenced generations of artists to come.
Your guide to the confusing basics of Alternative Music. Just remember: there are no dumb questions.
FKA twigs, Haerts, Mas Ysa, Temples, and Thumpers headline 10 bands primed for a 2014 breakout.
The '77 UK punk explosion has long been wildly overrated. It was everything that came after that was truly revolutionary.
The class releases that defined the growth of twee from tiny, self-contained English scene to global underground culture.
Sort through the glut of new releases with this guide to the upcoming indie-music release schedule.
Riot-grrrl's righteous indignation of sloganeering politics produced a run of raucous, rocking records.
The disappearance and return of the narcotic balladry of the 90's platinum band- Mazzy Star.
Ten bizarre, embarrassing, and much-remembered underground live-shows that have endeared their own, modern-day mythology.
M.I.A.'s industrial-sounding concept-album about internet surveillance isn't a political misstep, it's a musical one.
Tired of records that sound like random collections of files? Here's 20 LPs of singular theme and sustained narrative.
From Boogarins to Weaves, Haerts to Vår, Béisbol to Wampire, here's indie music's Class of 2013.
Let us chart the rise and rise of the Brooklyn outfit who's never met a bad review.
In an era of retromania, are the any bands left that aren't reforming? Gladly, there are...
Ranging from portraits of cult heroes (Roky Erickson) and global icons (Radiohead), here are the greatest music documentaries of all-time.
From studio perfectionists to singular idealists, with a host of rockbands in between, here's ten figures of infinite influence.
Ridiculous ambition, vicious self-loathing, attacks on God, and a scream bordering on hoarse: the best works of Conor Oberst.
The best 30 albums from the first 30 years of the all-conquering indie powerhouse.
The moment My Bloody Valentine issued their third album, 2013 was a great year for indie music.
Though it'll be forever associated with grunge, Seattle's legendary Sub Pop Records has reinvented itself in the new millennium, presiding over an eclectic lineup of increasingly-successful acts. Here're 10 picks from the label's first 20 years.
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Profile of the life and death of the alternative legends
Crack out your Shrimper cassettes! It's a history lesson in the lo-fi movement.
Looking for potential breakout bands in 2013? From Indians to Savages, here's ten sure bets.
The defining entries in any alternative record collection. The iconoclasts whose singular sound has shaped a whole generation of underground acts.
A traipse through the history of New York's venerable mega-indie, Matador Records.
10 all-time great albums on the ultimate underground indie label.
Don't know your shoegaze from your space-rock? Your twee from your C86? Read on to discover the peculiar secrets of all those baffling genre names.
When the Dinosaur Jr honcho obtusely let his bassplayer go, Barlow turned around and aired his grievances in a series of Sebadoh songs.
Teen pin-up turned avant-garde recluse. The strange music and even stranger life of Scott Walker.
The staunchly-punk, time-signature-juggling, nerdy instrumentalist mayhem of math-rock.
Slow, quiet, sad, introspective, pretty: a look at those fearless slowcore rebels who first dared to not-rock.
Chronicle of Canadian post-rock powerhouse Constellation Records.
In-depth historical profile of the influential, (semi-)independent Seattle label.
Ariel Pink's volumes of lo-fi home-recording were, he thinks, a form of therapy. Page 2.
The life-and-crimes of A. Pink: home-taping enthusiast turned unexpectedly-influential indie music sage.
A look at the fleeting flourish of folk-revival revivalists who've redreamt the imaginary hippy utopia for the new century.
Given the climate of reissues and reformations, it's no longer ironic to call these records 'classic indie-rock.' Here are the ten best.
Ignored, reviled, or 'lost' on their original release, these obscure LPs eventually proved hugely influential.
The most entertaining indie-rock Tweeters.
English electronic act Broadcast presided over a brilliant career of beautiful, strange, eerie songs.
Sufjan Stevens is an artist defined by his ambition.
Vincent Moon's 'Take Away Shows' revolutionized live music video. Here are the highlights of his inspired, improvised work.
Back in 1992, what t-shirt you wore really mattered.
Sharon Van Etten has a brand-new album. Are We There, the Brooklyn-based songwriter's fourth album, will be out May 27 on Jagjaguwar. Are We There marks
The VW frontman defends himself against charges of cultural appropriation.
The background, beginnings, and developments of Justin Vernon, also known as Bon Iver.
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It's the summery, nostalgic, warped-sounding electronic music that blew up the blogosphere in 2009.
The Pixies blistering use of broad dynamics and innovative re-write of pop-song forms redefined guitar music.
These unique, unusual, underground albums sound thrilling, strange, and amazing to this day. They're the best 'Obscure' albums lurking in popular music's fringes, inspiring many with their abundant artistry and individuality.
One of recorded music's most powerful voices screams a terrifying suite of horror-songs hoping for Peace.
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Brooklyn's preppiest, poppiest indie outfit has made a career of bright melody and slight controversy.
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Shy southerner Sam Beam's quiet songs have made a loud noise on the alternative scene.
Few record-labels have had an ongoing, unbroken run of pop-cultural credibility like Matador Records.
Ex Hex, Glass Animals, Nothing, Protomartyr, Your Friend: 10 bands building late buzz for SXSW 2014.
Back in 2002, the late Jason Molina already saw his Songs: Ohia records philosophically.
The most distinctive, most striking, most lauded album covers in indie music history.
Profile of the life and death of the alternative legends. Page 2.
Burying the stigma of the 'actor turned singer' forever, Zooey Deschanel's collaboration with M. Ward has produced some wondrous music.
A career chronicle of the recently-reborn godheads of the shoegaze movement.
A look at the life and career of fearsome fretboard shredder, old-fashioned romantic, and all-around dork, Annie Clark.
Slint's legacy grew in a fashion that matched the music: slow, steady, barely perceptible, ultimately legendary.
Ten picks from the tastefully-artwork'd back catalogue of the mighty Montréal indie, from Godspeed You Black Emperor! to Clues.
Call them anti-Christian-Rock records: 10 mighty albums rich in religious theme and biblical heft.
In the internet era, it's nearly impossible for a band to vanish. But these 10 awesome acts have come sadly close.
SXSW is suddenly on the horizon! The indie super-bowl takes over Austin, Texas, every march, with an orgy of bands and bloggers and bros getting righteous for
A story in which a warbling, harp-playing California girl becomes a towering colossus of the recorded medium.
Mountain Man Meath talks graduating college, touring the world, and taking her band's fragile music into dens of rock'n'roll iniquity.
Baltimore-based duo Beach House's slow, droney, comedown dream-pop has legions of listeners analyzing it for meaning. But the band's Alex Scally isn't one of them.
When it comes to SXSW, getting to Austin is one thing, coming up with a schedule is a whole other story. WIth thousands of bands in town and shows crammed
Tasked with following up 2011's Whokill, Merrill Garbus's third Tune-Yards LP is both more anthemic and more anxious.
Isaac Brock's adventures with The Pixies, God, jail, Johnny Marr, and chart-topping success.
Trying to make sense of the madness in Austin? Here's a handy list: 10 killer bills at SXSW 2014.
On their legendary double-LP, Can continued to push psychedelic, progressive rock into strange, new, uncharted terrain.
The greatest albums from one of indie music's greatest-ever labels.
'Loud City Song' finds the Los Angeles composer writing songs for the metropolis.
Chit-chat with the chatty and charming St. Vincent. Page 2.
Band: Tune-Yards Album: Nikki Nack Label: 4AD Release Date: May 6, 2014 On her third Tune-Yards LP, Merrill Garbus makes a masterwork out of dealing
Chronicle of the surprising rise of North Carolina's long-running independent label Merge Records.
Sharon Van Etten's songs are stark confessionals recounting life in a destructive relationship.
Essentially the early demos of Mark Kozelek, the debut Red House Painters' LP is a landmark in slow, sad, sombre songwriting.
Lance Bangs' history of the mysterious Slint finally brings to light facts to illuminate the dark Spiderland.
Profile of the long-running, fiercely-independent Pacific Northwest imprint, from riot-grrrl beginnings to its rebirth in Portland.
Afghan Whigs fourth LP was a classic concept-album unloved in its day.
An in-depth look at the harmony-draped folk-pop experimentalists.
Long before he went off the rails, Phil Spector marshaled his wall-of-sound behind the all-time classic Christmas LP.
Profile of the fore'er whimsical folk-pop troupe from Portland.
To English ears, the psychedelic, progressive, cosmic sound of early-'70s West Germany heralded a brave new sound: krautrock.
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History of glamorous English songstress Natasha Khan.
A riot breaks out, a bootleg is recorded, a mythical show is born.
Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally recall the history of their slow, narcotic Baltimore duo.
From Finnish synth-poppers to Australian oddballs, here's 10 choice foreign acts en route to CMJ 2013.
Nico's legendary second LP unmoored itself from pop-song form and drifted into a terrifying avant-garde underworld of haunted hymnals.
Walker's unquestioned masterpiece is an uneasy mixture of MOR balladry, lyrical savagery, and hesitant avant-gardism.
A tale of four Canadian gentlemen and their merry rock'n'roll band.
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" >C86 cassette, which celebrates England's
After penning his wildly-successful 'Autobiogaphy,' Morrissey returns to music-making armed with emboldened self-obsession.
The Italians Do It Better mastermind talks the 'Drive' soundtrack, Chromatics' ascent, and being patient in an impatient era.
'In Conflict' finds the Arcade Fire fiddler ditching concept-record fantasies for sentiment, songs, and sequencing stitched with conflict.
Laetitia Sadier discusses the state of Stereolab, and the state of the modern world, on the eve of her beloved band's ninth album.
Tired of tepid 'women in rock' lists? Here's ten fiery heroines that blazed radical new musical trails.
Theresa Wayman feels out the emotions running deep in Warpaint's debut LP.
No Age's fourth album explores unexpected soundscapes, using noise as a compositional tool.
On the sixth National album, Matt Berninger ruminates on the lure of heaven.
The third Vampire Weekend album makes the band's most varied, divisive, daring work.
An in-depth look at the brief history of the hype-starting New Yorker duo.
The Scottish pop outfit's second LP is one of the greatest records ever committed to disc.
The greatest rock-n-roll book in the world by the greatest rock-n-roll frontman in the world. And I'm not talking about Bono's autobiography.
Spoon's quietly-contrarian 8th album finds Britt Daniel and co sounding both brilliant and burdened.
These barmy Brazilians' riotous debut album is a freakadelic fusion of Beatles-esque studio experimentation and traditional Afro-Portuguese rhythms.
Tim Hardin's singular Suite for his newfound family makes for his most personal, profound album.
40 people were there, 4000 claim they were. A look at one of the most legendary, influential gigs in modern music history.
On the brink of a breakout, Merrill Garbus is shocked she hasn't had to compromise one iota along the way.
Neutral Milk Hotel main-man Jeff Mangum still hasn't been able to bring himself to attempt a successor to this slice of longplaying perfection.
With Vampire Weekend, The National, and Neko Case on the docket, the 2014 Best Alternative LP nominees are weirdly good...
'Ultramarine' is populated by young dreamers dealing with the sadness of growing up.
My Bloody Valentine's remarkable third album manages to live up to 22 years of wild expectations.
Chesnutt's bruised poetry and ragged Americana characterized a life defined by astonishing courage.
Biography of Animal Collective member Panda Bear, from his teenaged home-recordings to his solo flowering whilst living in Portugal.
The National's slow, steady progression, from unknowns to the band who soundtracked Hope and Change.
Chronicle of the rise and fall of Manchester's legendary Factory Records, home to Joy Division, New Order, the Happy Mondays and more.
The talkative Canadian rocker talks broken bones, Broken Social Scene, Montréal hype, and being mellowed by Bon Iver.
The intently political Canadian co-op authored the blueprint for cinematic, apocalyptic post-rock.
Julianna Barwick recorded her 4th LP in Iceland, but it sounds like it was made on a cloud.
Despite having toured for nearly 20 years, The Dead Weather's statuesque singer still suffers from stage fright. Page 2.
The non-spectacled half of the Norwegian soft-pop bards talks about staying true to their 'Quiet is the New Loud' ideal.
Potted history of the sprawling, many-membered, ever-evolving Canadian concern, as told by founders Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning.
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