Indie & Alternative Appreciation / Discussion Thread!

overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
edited July 2011 in History of Rock
Since the Indie/Alternative Masterthread in the USL Forum has turned into more of a Indie/Alternative discussion thread, I figured I start this thread here. This way we'll have a place to discuss indie and alternative rock in addition to a thread supporting its inclusion in Rock Band. So, please try to keep the random indie/alt rock discussion here, and Rock Band related topics in the Indie/Alternative Masterthread in the USL forum.

Essential Listening For Indie & Alternative Rock Fans

Alternative Essentials Indie Essentials Essential Albums That Heavily Influenced Alternative Music
Beginner's Guide To Indie And Alternative Rock
Since the above essentials lists are quite large and can be quite intimidating to someone new to the genre, this is a list of albums that would be a good starting point for anyone new to the genre. Album Of The Week

06/12/10: WhoMadeWho - The Plot
Genre(s): Dance, Electronic, New-Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Indie Rock
Recommended If You Enjoy: Depeche Mode, TV On The Radio, LCD Soundsystem

This album sounds somewhat like a combination of Violator and Turn On The Bright Lights. The dance beats are backed up with blatant post-punk influence, and it makes for a pretty interesting album.

Preview Songs:
- Keep Me In My Plane
- TV Friend
- I Lost My Voice

http://rbfindiealt.blogspot.com/


Previous Albums Of The Week:
11/05/09: The Wrens - The Meadowlands
11/12/09: Autolux - Future Perfect
11/19/09: Japandroids - Post-Nothing

11/25/09: Azeda Booth - In Flesh Tones
11/30/09: Menomena - I Am The Fun Blame Monster!
12/06/09: OOIOO - Feather Float
12/13/09: Rheostatics - Melville
12/18/09: The Van Pelt - Sultans Of Sentiment
12/26/09: The Amps - Pacer
01/03/10: Eric's Trip - Forever Again
01/10/10: Jay Reatard - Watch Me Fall
01/18/10: Warpaint - Exquisite Corpse EP
01/24/10: Chad VanGaalen - Soft Airplane
01/31/10: Difference Engine - Breadmaker
02/06/10: Vic Chesnutt - Is The Actor Happy?
02/13/10: S - Puking and Crying
02/19/10: Gentleman Reg - Jet Black
02/27/10: Women - Women
03/07/10: Zola Jesus - Stridulum (EP)
03/12/10: Ghostkeeper - Ghostkeeper
03/21/10: The Dinner Is Ruined - Love Songs From The Lubritorium
03/28/10: The Summerlad - Themes: International
04/03/10: Brainiac - Bonsai Superstar
04/10/10: Memory Tapes - Seek Magic
04/16/10: Pearl Harbor - Something About The Chaparrals (EP)
04/24/10: Edria - Regret
04/30/10: Faraquet - The View From This Tower
05/09/10: Strawberry Story - Clamming For It
05/17/10: Free Kitten - Nice Ass
05/25/10: The Easy Tease - Bold Displays Of Cowardice
05/30/10: Naked on the Vague - Heaps Of Nothing
06/07/10: Wild Nothing - Gemini


User Recommendations

Gowienczyk's Album Of The Week:
Matt Pond PA - Several Arrows Later
Luna - Lunapark
The Mekons - Rock 'n' Roll
British Sea Power - The Decline of British Sea Power
Eve's Plum - Envy
Self - Gizmodgery


Relevant links:
Post-Hardcore Thread
Punk Appreciation Thread
Official Shoegaze Thread
Post-Rock Appreciation Thread
Indie/Alternative Masterthread Part 2 (USL)
Shoegaze Request Thread (USL)
Twee-Pop Appreciation Thread (I'm not linking to it out of spite)


(A big thank you to everyone who contributed to compiling the original essentials lists. And thanks to afterstasis for the new one.)

Comments

  • JukeBoxHeroJukeBoxHero Headliner
    edited August 2009
    I would add Belly's Star to that list, timmay as well.
  • afterstasisafterstasis Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    timmay9;2870010 said:
    I'll help start it off.

    For those uninformed or wanting to learn more, some essential alternative albums:
    The Cure-Disintegration
    Dinosaur Jr.-You're Living All Over Me
    Joy Division-Unknown Pleasures
    The Mountain Goats-Tallahassee
    Nirvana-Nevermind
    Pixies-Doolittle
    Radiohead-OK Computer
    R.E.M.-Murmur
    The Replacements-Let It Be
    The Smashing Pumpkins-Siamese Dream
    The Smiths-The Queen Is Dead
    Sonic Youth-Daydream Nation
    The Stone Roses-The Stone Roses
    great picks... don't forget...

    husker du - candy apple grey
    carissa's wierd - songs about leaving
    magnetic fields - i
    sebadoh - bakesale
    bright eyes - fevers and mirrors
    comet gain - realistes
    modest mouse - moon and antarctica
    pavement - wowee zowee
    built to spill - perfect from now on
    crooked fingers - red devil dawn
    flaming lips - clouds taste metallic
    the halo benders - the rebels not in
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    I was doing stuff off the top of my head. I agree with all of your picks JBH and stasis.
  • RedBaron45RedBaron45 Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    afterstasis;2870059 said:
    great picks... don't forget...

    husker du - candy apple grey
    carissa's wierd - songs about leaving
    magnetic fields - i
    sebadoh - bakesale
    bright eyes - fevers and mirrors
    comet gain - realistes
    modest mouse - moon and antarctica
    pavement - wowee zowee
    built to spill - perfect from now on
    crooked fingers - red devil dawn
    flaming lips - clouds taste metallic
    the halo benders - the rebels not in
    The Lonesome Crowded West is FAR superior to Moon and Antartica.

    I also think Sonic Youth's "EVOL" is very underated. I actually prefer that album to Daydream Nation.
  • afterstasisafterstasis Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    RedBaron45;2870097 said:
    The Lonesome Crowded West is FAR superior to Moon and Antartica.

    I also think Sonic Youth's "EVOL" is very underated. I actually prefer that album to Daydream Nation.
    i disagree on both counts, though evol and LCW are both really good albums.
  • overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    I think for "essential albums," I'll probably stick to the most widely accepted (from critics and fans) magnum opus for various bands. As such, I'll add some user favorites on there too.

    So (in addition to timmay9's list), I'll probably add:
    Pavement - Slanted & Enchanted
    Modest Mouse - The Moon & Antarctica
    Built To Spill - Keep It Like A Secret
    The Breeders - Last Splash
    The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms
    My Bloody Valentine - Loveless
    Along with a few others, as soon as I put some more research in.

    I'll probably give the Pixies two albums, since both Surfer Rosa and Doolittle are so very good, and so very important. It'll most likely be the only band with two "essential" albums. Possibly R.E.M. as well, since both Murmer and Automatic For the People are so highly praised.

    Also, if enough people agree with me:
    Archers Of Loaf - Icky Mettle
    Liz Phair - Exile In Guyville
  • afterstasisafterstasis Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    i almost listed the archers of loaf album myself... great stuff.
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870128 said:

    The Breeders - Last Splash
    The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms
    Liz Phair - Exile In Guyville
    I absolutely agree. I would argue that the first 3 Pavement records are essential listening.
  • JukeBoxHeroJukeBoxHero Headliner
    edited August 2009
    While King is my favorite, I choose Star by Belly since that is seen as their essential album.
  • overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    timmay9;2870144 said:
    I absolutely agree. I would argue that the first 3 Pavement records are essential listening.
    You're probably right. And who am I to argue? I love Pavement.
    afterstasis said:
    i almost listed the archers of loaf album myself... great stuff.
    I know Icky Mettle is a pretty well liked album. I also forgot about In The Aeroplane Over The Sea, though that could possibly cause some controversy. I haven't seen many people bash it on these forums, but there are plenty of indie rock fans out there who wouldn't consider it "essential" in any sense of the word.
  • afterstasisafterstasis Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870172 said:

    I know Icky Mettle is a pretty well liked album. I also forgot about In The Aeroplane Over The Sea, though that could possibly cause some controversy. I haven't seen many people bash it on these forums, but there are plenty of indie rock fans out there who wouldn't consider it "essential" in any sense of the word.
    i totally forgot NMH... yes, aeroplane is absolutely essential listening.
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870172 said:
    You're probably right. And who am I to argue? I love Pavement.



    I know Icky Mettle is a pretty well liked album. I also forgot about In The Aeroplane Over The Sea, though that could possibly cause some controversy. I haven't seen many people bash it on these forums, but there are plenty of indie rock fans out there who wouldn't consider it "essential" in any sense of the word.
    It's acquired, and much deeper listening. I would say for anyone that considers themselves a true fan of alternative music they should listen to that album.
  • overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    timmay9;2870182 said:
    It's acquired, and much deeper listening. I would say for anyone that considers themselves a true fan of alternative music they should listen to that album.
    I agree. Regardless of whether or not you enjoy it, it's definitely something every fan of the genre should listen to at least once.

    I should also probably add a Fugazi album. Repeater seems like the right call for them (unless everyone out there prefers Red Medicine). I will also add J&MC's Psychocandy to my list.

    Radiohead could also have a 2nd essential album, since Kid A has influenced modern music a great deal.

    Also, some more debatable choices:
    Stereolab - Emperor Tomato Ketchup
    Weezer - Weezer (Blue)
    Beck - Odelay (I think Alright_Computer will kill me if I don't include it)
    The Fiery Furnaces - Blueberry Boat
    Oasis - (What's The Story) Morning Glory?
    Blur - (album choice is also debatable)

    And of course there are always the more recent indie favorites (stuff like Arcade Fire, Broken Social Scene, etc, etc). I'd be very hesitant to call any of those band's albums "essential" already though.
  • RedBaron45RedBaron45 Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870172 said:
    You're probably right. And who am I to argue? I love Pavement.



    I know Icky Mettle is a pretty well liked album. I also forgot about In The Aeroplane Over The Sea, though that could possibly cause some controversy. I haven't seen many people bash it on these forums, but there are plenty of indie rock fans out there who wouldn't consider it "essential" in any sense of the word.
    I have heard In The Aeroplane Over The Sea and can safely say that I'm not a fan of it. I do respect the album, though, and I can understand why people like it. It just isn't really my thing.

    I would say that it is essential listening.
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870199 said:
    I agree. Regardless of whether or not you enjoy it, it's definitely something every fan of the genre should listen to at least once.

    I should also probably add a Fugazi album. Repeater seems like the right call for them (unless everyone out there prefers Red Medicine). I will also add J&MC's Psychocandy to my list.

    Radiohead could also have a 2nd essential album, since Kid A has influenced modern music a great deal.
    I would honestly include OKC, Kid A, and The Bends, but that's just me.

    I forgot about Jesus and the Mary Chain. Should we include a fIREHOSE album as well?

    I'd say Repeater for Fugazi as well.
    Weezer - Pinkerton
    Oasis - Definitely Maybe
    Fixed.
  • overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    timmay9;2870287 said:
    I would honestly include OKC, Kid A, and The Bends, but that's just me.
    Yeah, I'll put The Bends up there as well. I was trying not to just overload on my personal favorite bands, but there's no denying the influence and importance of those albums.
    I forgot about Jesus and the Mary Chain. Should we include a fIREHOSE album as well?
    I'm not familiar enough with them to really tell which album is their best or at least their most popular/significant album. I'm not sure if they're a band with a widely accepted magnum opus.
    I'd say Repeater for Fugazi as well.
    Repeater it is.
    Fixed.
    Heh, another case of me trying to avoid personal favorites. for this thread, Pinkerton and Definitely Maybe are probably better choices though.

    I'm still not really sure which Blur album would be appropriate for an essentials list... Anyone have a suggestion?
  • neckermanncjneckermanncj Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    where was i when you started this!?!?!

    also,

    The Shins - (album choice debatable)
    Belle & Sebastain - Dear Catastrophe Waitress
    Bright Eyes - (album debatable)
    of Montreal - (album debatable)
    Broken Social Scene - Broken Social Scene
    Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
    The Decemberists - Castaways & Cutouts
    The National - Boxer
    Los Campesinos! - Hold On Now, Youngster...
    Mates of State - Bring It Back
    The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
    Okkervil River - Black Sheep Boy
    Spoon - Kill The Moonlight/Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga
    The Strokes - Is This It?
    Sufjan Stevens - Illinoise
    Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Fever To Tell
    Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
    The White Stripes - White Blood Cells
    The New Pornographers - Twin Cinema
    The Apples In Stereo - Fun Trick Noisemaker
    Death Cab For Cutie - Transatlanticism
    Guided By Voices - Alien Lanes/Bee Thousand
    Morrissey - Viva Hate
  • neckermanncjneckermanncj Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2869859 said:
    Very well! I have made this thread!

    If we could all try to post the general indie/alt rock discussion there and keep the Rock Band related stuff here, this might not be a gigantic waste of my (and I guess your) time.

    RedBaron45, if you wouldn't mind including this link in the OP, I would be most grateful!

    BAM: http://www.rockband.com/forums/showthread.php?t=157514

    neckermanncj, Coldplayer, FatWilma, RedBaron45, etc, etc. If you guys wouldn't mind telling me what kind of stuff you want me to include in the OP there, I'll do my best to make it a thread that people actually want to post in, as opposed to a product of my boredom.
    just list albums in the OP for now, add links later so people can check them out
  • overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    I'm going to avoid more recent artists/albums, since it's really not fair to call them "essential" already. There are a few exceptional albums that could fall under that category, but otherwise it's just too soon.

    Also, if I add a Belle & Sebastian album it'll probably be one of their first two (Tigermilk or If You're Feeling Sinister). As I said, I want to avoid more recent stuff, and those two are the most defining albums B&S have put out. Guided By Voices will definitely be on that list though.

    Also, You Forgot It In Me is more widely accepted as BSS's best work. It may prove to be one of those exceptional exceptions.
  • neckermanncjneckermanncj Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870418 said:
    I'm going to avoid more recent artists/albums, since it's really not fair to call them "essential" already. There are a few exceptional albums that could fall under that category, but otherwise it's just too soon.

    Also, if I add a Belle & Sebastian album it'll probably be one of their first two (Tigermilk or If You're Feeling Sinister). As I said, I want to avoid more recent stuff, and those two are the most defining albums B&S have put out.
    those are the only albums that you may have heard, in my opinion the essential album for Belle & Sebastain is Dear Catastrophe Waitress.

    an essential album doesn't mean it has to be an older release by a band. if you go back to 1989 when Doolittle was released, did people know that that album was going to be hugely influencial and everything? probably not

    im just saying... but for B&S their best album is DCW
  • overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    neckermanncj;2870432 said:
    those are the only albums that you may have heard, in my opinion the essential album for Belle & Sebastain is Dear Catastrophe Waitress.
    I've been through B&S's albums (except for one) at least once each. Tigermilk and If You're Feeling Sinister are the only ones that really stood out for me (and they're the only ones I still listen to with any regularity). Dear Catastrophe Waitress was a decent album, but it's nothing particularly spectacular (or defining for that matter). It was an almost complete departure from their sound on previous albums as well. They lost their lo-fi folky awesomeness...

    It's really arguable if Belle & Sebastian deserve a spot at all, but I would certainly say so.
    an essential album doesn't mean it has to be an older release by a band. if you go back to 1989 when Doolittle was released, did people know that that album was going to be hugely influencial and everything? probably not
    To be an "essential album," said album must be... Well, "essential." Typically that would mean something that you need to really understand and appreciate the genre. It has nothing to do with when the album was released, it's just that I can't think of many recent albums that qualify as absolutely essential.

    I'm not sure how lenient or strict I'll need to be for adding albums to the list in the OP... Depends on just how many there are in the end I guess. I will also add albums that are very good, but not really "essential" at some point. Right now, I'm trying to compose a list of the most important ones.
    im just saying... but for B&S their best album is DCW
    Is there any evidence to show that? Besides your opinion, that is. With B&S it's debatable. The one album I haven't heard is The Boy with the Arab Strap, and there are actually quite a few people out there who say it's their best album... For the most part though, Tigermilk and/or If You're Feeling Sinister are pointed to as their best (at least from what I've seen).
  • neckermanncjneckermanncj Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870494 said:
    I've been through B&S's albums (except for one) at least once each. Tigermilk and If You're Feeling Sinister are the only ones that really stood out for me (and they're the only ones I still listen to with any regularity). Dear Catastrophe Waitress was a decent album, but it's nothing particularly spectacular (or defining for that matter). It was an almost complete departure from their sound on previous albums as well. They lost their lo-fi folky awesomeness...

    It's really arguable if Belle & Sebastian deserve a spot at all, but I would certainly say so.



    To be an "essential album," said album must be... Well, "essential." Typically that would mean something that you need to really understand and appreciate the genre. It has nothing to do with when the album was released, it's just that I can't think of many recent albums that qualify as absolutely essential.

    I'm not sure how lenient or strict I'll need to be for adding albums to the list in the OP... Depends on just how many there are in the end I guess. I will also add albums that are very good, but not really "essential" at some point. Right now, I'm trying to compose a list of the most important ones.



    Is there any evidence to show that? Besides your opinion, that is. With B&S it's debatable. The one album I haven't heard is The Boy with the Arab Strap, and there are actually quite a few people out there who say it's their best album... For the most part though, Tigermilk and/or If You're Feeling Sinister are pointed to as their best (at least from what I've seen).
    fair enough, i guess its the same with Wincing and Oh Inverted world... everyone points to Oh Inverted world as being the Shins best album, but i like Wincing the best.

    if you are going to choose any of those 2 i would want "If You're Feeling Sinister"

    better album IMO than Tigermilk, and you should check out "The Boy With The Arab Strap" it is quite good as well :)
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    I think it'd be cool to talk about some of the scenes that inspired, were influenced, or spun off from alternative music.

    No wave, post-punk, anti-folk, goth rock, the whole college rock scene, etc.
  • neckermanncjneckermanncj Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    also i think you should include Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Clap Your Hands Say Yeah in the OP. it exemplifies Indie Rock very well, and is an excellent album.

    also throw in Oh, Inverted World if you want

    EDIT: and if you are going to have an of Montreal album, you could use Satanic Panic Panic In The Attic, Coquelot Asleep In The Poppies... or The *** Parade. someone else can have an opinion on those 3 and choose one of them if they want

    also you should add Wilco's Yankee Hotel Foxtrot! :D

    EDIT#2: Guided By Voices!!!!
  • overcookedbaconovercookedbacon Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    The more recent (post-2000) indie albums that I am considering:

    The Fiery Furnaces - Blueberry Boat
    Broken Social Scene - You Forgot It In People
    ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead - Source Tags & Codes
    Interpol - Turn On The Bright Lights
    The Arcade Fire - Funeral
    TV On The Radio - Dear Science or Return To Cookie Mountain

    To be fair neckermanncj, a lot of the stuff you mentioned is really quite good. It's again just not really that essential to indie rock. The Shins are great, but they're nothing new.

    I will be including a Sebadoh album. Probably Bakesale. Although it's tempting to include either III or Bubble & Scrape.
    timmay9 said:
    I think it'd be cool to talk about some of the scenes that inspired, were influenced, or spun off from alternative music.

    No wave, post-punk, anti-folk, goth rock, the whole college rock scene, etc.
    For sure. I'll get around to it tomorrow (hopefully).

    Man, I probably should have thought ahead and reserved two or so posts in addition to my OP... Oh well, I'll make it work.
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    I'd suggest including The 'Mats Tim as well. Goes hand in hand with Let It Be.

    Also, while stasis might disagree, Husker Du's Zen Arcade or New Day Rising should be included.

    And:

    Talking Heads-Remain in Light
    The Velvet Underground-The Velvet Underground and Nico (arguable as alternative)
    Violent Femmes-Violent Femmes
  • neckermanncjneckermanncj Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    overcookedbacon;2870418 said:
    Also, You Forgot It In Me is more widely accepted as BSS's best work. It may prove to be one of those exceptional exceptions.
    i was gonna correct you
    overcookedbacon;2870681 said:

    To be fair neckermanncj, a lot of the stuff you mentioned is really quite good. It's again just not really that essential to indie rock. The Shins are great, but they're nothing new.
    :mad:
    they are pretty essential, they are one of the more popular Indie Rock acts today, they have all the right as Liz Phair does to be on your list, i never see Liz Phair mentioned anywhere as being an essential Indie Rock artist (i know who liz phair is, i'm from CT also)

    you should also add Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (essential Alt-Country)

    and pick a Yo La Tengo album

    and i'm fine with You Forgot It In People, i just like their s/t more

    Elephant 6 bands need representation!

    The Olivia Tremor Control - Dusk At Cubist Castle
    The Apples In Stereo - Fun Trick Noisemaker
    of Montreal - Coquelicot Asleep In The Poppies: A Variety of Whimsical Verse

    Elliott Smith - Either/Or or XO

    i think personal preference is overtaking your decisions....
    timmay9;2870698 said:
    I'd suggest including The 'Mats Tim as well. Goes hand in hand with Let It Be.

    Also, while stasis might disagree, Husker Du's Zen Arcade or New Day Rising should be included.

    And:

    Talking Heads-Remain in Light
    The Velvet Underground-The Velvet Underground and Nico (arguable as alternative)
    Violent Femmes-Violent Femmes
    i like these


    EDIT: in what ways are Slint Indie Rock? :confused:
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    I kind of dig the Shins, but I don't know how they are all that essential.

    Liz Phair helped push boundaries about what women could sing about.
  • FatWilmaFatWilma Road Warrior
    edited August 2009
    i didn't see any of these mentioned (may have overlooked a few):

    My Morning Jacket - Z
    Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
    Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, Sky Blue Sky
    Flaming Lips - The Soft Bulletin, Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots
    The Secret Machines - Now Here Is Nowhere
    The Dears - No Cities Left
    !!! - Louden Up Now, Myth Takes
    MGMT - Oracular Spectacular
    Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
    The Whigs - Mission Control
    Tapes 'n Tapes - The Loon
    Band of Horses - Everything All The Time

    i know bacon probably doesn't consider most of those essentials, but they are to me... :D
  • timmay9timmay9 Washed Up
    edited August 2009
    FatWilma;2872013 said:
    i didn't see any of these mentioned (may have overlooked a few):

    My Morning Jacket - Z
    Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
    Flaming Lips - The Soft Bulletin, Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots
    The Secret Machines - Now Here Is Nowhere
    The Dears - No Cities Left
    !!! - Louden Up Now, Myth Takes
    MGMT - Oracular Spectacular
    Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
    The Whigs - Mission Control
    Tapes 'n Tapes - The Loon
    Band of Horses - Everything All The Time

    i know bacon probably doesn't consider most of those essentials, but they are to me... :D
    None of those are what I would consider essential listening (not saying the bands suck).
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