Alternative Music: Most Popular Articles
The Scottish outfit have had a long (and brilliant) career of sterling pop songs. Here are the ten best.
10 records, no singing. Well, almost. Ten of the brightest lights shining in post-rock's instrumentalist darkness.
The greatest ever indie record labels.
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?
Tally your time-signatures! A guide to the essential, indispensable math-rock records.
From Tune-Yards to Sun Kil Moon to Angel Olsen, here's the highlights of another awesome year in indie music.
Slow, sad, frighteningly quiet: a rollcall of classic 1990s LPs from these masters of the spartan.
West Germany in the 1970s was a fertile time for progressive, mind-altering music.
Home taping didn't kill music, it revolutionized it. Here's 10 classic home-made records committed straight to analogue tape.
Ever wondered where's the best place to start for a Fall neophyte?
FKA twigs, Haerts, Mas Ysa, Temples, and Thumpers headline 10 bands primed for a 2014 breakout.
Dewy, dreamy, distorted guitar. Mumbled, barely-there vocals. It's ten classic shoegaze LPs, from MBV on down...
The '77 UK punk explosion has long been wildly overrated. It was everything that came after that was truly revolutionary.
Your guide to the confusing basics of Alternative Music. Just remember: there are no dumb questions.
The radical records that broke the mold, moved music forward, and influenced generations of artists to come.
The class releases that defined the growth of twee from tiny, self-contained English scene to global underground culture.
Tired of records that sound like random collections of files? Here's 20 LPs of singular theme and sustained narrative.
Riot-grrrl's righteous indignation of sloganeering politics produced a run of raucous, rocking records.
The best 30 albums from the first 30 years of the all-conquering indie powerhouse.
Sufjan Stevens is an artist defined by his ambition.
Ranging from portraits of cult heroes (Roky Erickson) and global icons (Radiohead), here are the greatest music documentaries of all-time.
Sort through the glut of new releases with this guide to the upcoming indie-music release schedule.
Ten bizarre, embarrassing, and much-remembered underground live-shows that have endeared their own, modern-day mythology.
Teen pin-up turned avant-garde recluse. The strange music and even stranger life of Scott Walker.
M.I.A.'s industrial-sounding concept-album about internet surveillance isn't a political misstep, it's a musical one.
Crack out your Shrimper cassettes! It's a history lesson in the lo-fi movement.
In the internet era, it's nearly impossible for a band to vanish. But these 10 awesome acts have come sadly close.
Ridiculous ambition, vicious self-loathing, attacks on God, and a scream bordering on hoarse: the best works of Conor Oberst.
The VW frontman talks blog haters, African pop-music, and his lyrical love of polysyllabic words. Page 2.
From Boogarins to Weaves, Haerts to Vår, Béisbol to Wampire, here's indie music's Class of 2013.
In an era of retromania, are the any bands left that aren't reforming? Gladly, there are...
From studio perfectionists to singular idealists, with a host of rockbands in between, here's ten figures of infinite influence.
Let us chart the rise and rise of the Brooklyn outfit who's never met a bad review.
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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The defining entries in any alternative record collection. The iconoclasts whose singular sound has shaped a whole generation of underground acts.
The disappearance and return of the narcotic balladry of the 90's platinum band- Mazzy Star.
A look at the ragged instrumentalists and jazz-schooled dorks that've made up post-rock's wordless movement.
The staunchly-punk, time-signature-juggling, nerdy instrumentalist mayhem of math-rock.
Chronicle of Canadian post-rock powerhouse Constellation Records.
Ignored, reviled, or 'lost' on their original release, these obscure LPs eventually proved hugely influential.
10 all-time great albums on the ultimate underground indie label.
Isaac Brock's adventures with The Pixies, God, jail, Johnny Marr, and chart-topping success.
Given the climate of reissues and reformations, it's no longer ironic to call these records 'classic indie-rock.' Here are the ten best.
Here's how humbug hipsters stuck at family gatherings can commandeer the stereo and not upset the seasonal apple-cart.
The moment My Bloody Valentine issued their third album, 2013 was a great year for indie music.
The background, beginnings, and developments of Justin Vernon, also known as Bon Iver.
Brooklyn's preppiest, poppiest indie outfit has made a career of bright melody and slight controversy.
When the Dinosaur Jr honcho obtusely let his bassplayer go, Barlow turned around and aired his grievances in a series of Sebadoh songs.
English electronic act Broadcast presided over a brilliant career of beautiful, strange, eerie songs.
Slow, quiet, sad, introspective, pretty: a look at those fearless slowcore rebels who first dared to not-rock.
The most distinctive, most striking, most lauded album covers in indie music history.
Looking for potential breakout bands in 2013? From Indians to Savages, here's ten sure bets.
Chronicle of the rise and demise of the ultimate depressive songsmith.
Tired of tepid 'women in rock' lists? Here's ten fiery heroines that blazed radical new musical trails.
Profile of the fore'er whimsical folk-pop troupe from Portland.
Ten picks from the tastefully-artwork'd back catalogue of the mighty Montréal indie, from Godspeed You Black Emperor! to Clues.
A look at the life and career of fearsome fretboard shredder, old-fashioned romantic, and all-around dork, Annie Clark.
The B&S frontman talks of his 'story set to music,' his other band's history, and how there weren't any decent records released in the '90s. Page 2.
Quotable notables, amusing anecdotes, public repudiations, and choice chit-chat. Here's ten killer conversations with indie royalty.
To English ears, the psychedelic, progressive, cosmic sound of early-'70s West Germany heralded a brave new sound: krautrock.
Call them anti-Christian-Rock records: 10 mighty albums rich in religious theme and biblical heft.
40 people were there, 4000 claim they were. A look at one of the most legendary, influential gigs in modern music history.
Tasked with following up 2011's Whokill, Merrill Garbus's third Tune-Yards LP is both more anthemic and more anxious.
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.
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class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Born: November
From Finnish synth-poppers to Australian oddballs, here's 10 choice foreign acts en route to CMJ 2013.
The Scottish pop outfit's second LP is one of the greatest records ever committed to disc.
The most entertaining indie-rock Tweeters.
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.
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Michigan-born,
Panda Bear felt the pressure of following up 'Person Pitch.' Rising above it was, he says, like battling depression. Page 2.
Chronicle of the rise and fall of Manchester's legendary Factory Records, home to Joy Division, New Order, the Happy Mondays and more.
An in-depth look at the harmony-draped folk-pop experimentalists.
On their final album, English moodists Talk Talk created an atmospheric opus that presaged post-rock's rise.
The life and times of the Scottish twee institution.
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.
It's the summery, nostalgic, warped-sounding electronic music that blew up the blogosphere in 2009.
Back in 2002, the late Jason Molina already saw his Songs: Ohia records philosophically.
A look at the fleeting flourish of folk-revival revivalists who've redreamt the imaginary hippy utopia for the new century.
The crossover success of Sleater-Kinney's anthemic third album marked the end of riot-grrrl as self-contained, insular movement.
Back in 1992, what t-shirt you wore really mattered.
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.
Silver Jews' David Berman discusses his recent embrace of the road, pop's utter lack of message, and whether he's still on a mission from God.
An in-depth look at the brief history of the hype-starting New Yorker duo.
Trying to make sense of the madness in Austin? Here's a handy list: 10 killer bills at SXSW 2014.
Shy southerner Sam Beam's quiet songs have made a loud noise on the alternative scene.
The sweet-voiced singer talks the togetherness of Braids and the untogetherness of Blue Hawaii.
The life-and-crimes of A. Pink: home-taping enthusiast turned unexpectedly-influential indie music sage.
Few record-labels have had an ongoing, unbroken run of pop-cultural credibility like Matador Records.
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
Manchester's legendary Factory Records assembled an artful discography of far more than albums.
The talkative Canadian rocker talks broken bones, Broken Social Scene, Montréal hype, and being mellowed by Bon Iver.
From Young Marble Giants to The Smiths to Galaxie 500, here's ten awesome Rough Trade LPs, from the golden age of indie.
In 1968, a group of San Francisco avant-gardist decided to try their subversive hands at a rock'n'roll band.
Dave Longstreth's project has gone from bedroom four-tracking to six-piece blow-out in a march from obscurity to popularity.
Laetitia Sadier discusses the state of Stereolab, and the state of the modern world, on the eve of her beloved band's ninth album.
Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally recall the history of their slow, narcotic Baltimore duo.
On the release of 'Visions', Grimes talks indie bands as brands, cognitive neuroscience, and Montréal.
The greatest albums from one of indie music's greatest-ever labels.
Potted, spotted history of the impossibly successful Seattle indie-rock icons, as told by its members.
Profile of Chicago's influential independent label Thrill Jockey.
A traipse through the history of New York's venerable mega-indie, Matador Records.
One of recorded music's most powerful voices screams a terrifying suite of horror-songs hoping for Peace.
Vincent Moon's 'Take Away Shows' revolutionized live music video. Here are the highlights of his inspired, improvised work.
Profile of the long-running, fiercely-independent Pacific Northwest imprint, from riot-grrrl beginnings to its rebirth in Portland.
Ex Hex, Glass Animals, Nothing, Protomartyr, Your Friend: 10 bands building late buzz for SXSW 2014.
Kate Bush's grand, resplendent debut was a work of uncommon ambition and artistry for a teen prodigy.
Theresa Wayman feels out the emotions running deep in Warpaint's debut LP.
Bethany Cosentino's debut LP is a set of timeless pop-songs sparkling with Californian sun and laced with lyrical sadness.
Ariel Pink's volumes of lo-fi home-recording were, he thinks, a form of therapy. Page 2.
A story in which a warbling, harp-playing California girl becomes a towering colossus of the recorded medium.
The gentle folkie with the high, high voice colors in his pre-Sub Pop musical backstory.
The guitarist of the Scottish post-rock heroes is howling.
Biography of Animal Collective member Panda Bear, from his teenaged home-recordings to his solo flowering whilst living in Portugal.
On his debut, Marc Bolan wanders, lost, in a psychedelic, fairy-tale forest filled with magic mushrooms. And bongos.
Sharon Van Etten's songs are stark confessionals recounting life in a destructive relationship.
Nico's legendary second LP unmoored itself from pop-song form and drifted into a terrifying avant-garde underworld of haunted hymnals.
When urination says it all for the retro-rock generation.
After five years apart, Erlend Øye and Eirik Glambek Bøe are back on record together, writing a love-letter to each other.
Tim Hardin's singular Suite for his newfound family makes for his most personal, profound album.
This collaboration between a crew of young, reactionist rebels protest Brazil's military government ended up founding an entire genre.
Slint's legacy grew in a fashion that matched the music: slow, steady, barely perceptible, ultimately legendary.
A tale of four Canadian gentlemen and their merry rock'n'roll band.
On the sixth National album, Matt Berninger ruminates on the lure of heaven.
Mountain Man Meath talks graduating college, touring the world, and taking her band's fragile music into dens of rock'n'roll iniquity.
Chaz Bundick talks about talking about people behind their backs right to their faces.
The Pixies blistering use of broad dynamics and innovative re-write of pop-song forms redefined guitar music.
The chatty Metric frontwoman talks sad songs, Canadian socialism, and music-industry exploitation. Page 2.
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" >C86 cassette, which celebrates England's
Profile of the life and death of the alternative legends
The English post-punks weigh up the art of listening, the power of silence, and the din of hype.
From Tortoise to the National Trust, ten of the best from the artful back-catalogue of Chicago's ever-influential Thrill Jockey imprint.
Potted history of Austin indie-rock outfit Spoon, from their troubled early days to their chart-bothering recent rock classics.
Chronicle of the riot grrrl movement's furious surge in the early 1990s.
The non-spectacled half of the Norwegian soft-pop bards talks about staying true to their 'Quiet is the New Loud' ideal.
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
The Velvet Underground's debut gave birth to the cliché of the band that inspired more bands to form than they actually sold records.
The intently political Canadian co-op authored the blueprint for cinematic, apocalyptic post-rock.
Post Primavera meltdown, Nathan Williams talks about being the most hated man in the blogosphere.
Chronicle of the life and times of the fallen angel of disco-as-art, New York cellist and home-recording scientist Arthur Russell.
The National's Dessner brothers solicited every indie act in existence to help them achieve one goal: making a charity compilation that doesn't suck.
The Beach House vocalist talks about the 'sexual' qualities of their third LP, 'Teen Dream'.
The best $606.17 recording budget Sub Pop ever presided over.
On their legendary double-LP, Can continued to push psychedelic, progressive rock into strange, new, uncharted terrain.