alternative rock

alternative rock - page 10

britpop > early 1990s > NWONW

NWONW (new wave of new wave):

stylistic origins: alternative rock / new wave / post-punk / mod revival
cultural origins: early 1990s, United Kingdom

The New Wave of New Wave (NWONW) was coined by music journalists to describe a subgenre of the British alternative rock scene in the early 1990s, in which bands displayed post-punk and new wave influences, particularly from bands such as The Clash, Blondie, Wire, and The Stranglers.

The associated bands generally played guitar-based rock music often accompanied by keyboards. The movement was short lived and several of the bands involved were later linked with the more commercially successful Britpop, which is immediately preceded, and the NWONW was described by John Harris of The Guardian (one of the journalists who first coined the term) as “Britpop without the good bits”.

Record label Fierce Panda’s first release, Shagging in the Streets, was a tribute to the scene, featuring S*M*A*S*H, Done Lying Down, These Animal Men, and others.

Associated bands have included Elastica, S*M*A*S*H, Menswear, Sleeper, Echobelly, Shed Seven, These Animal Men, and Compulsion.

Done Lying Down – Septic – promo video 1994; Compulsion – Mall Monarchy; Elastica – Waking Up:

derivative forms: post-punk revival

1990s > slowcore


stylistic origins: indie rock / alternative rock
cultural origins: 1990s, UK and United States

Slowcore is a fusion genre of indie rock and sadcore, characterized by minimal musical backing played at extremely slow speeds. Slowcore songs feature “depressing lyrics”, according to Listverse. Guitars are normally clean and undistorted but often feature heavy use of reverb. Some singer-songwriters who have been labeled slowcore include distinctive and unusual vocalists, such as the Swedish singer Stina Nordenstam, and bands with creative drummers, such as Codeine.
Slowcore is often used interchangeably with the term sadcore.

Stina Nordenstam – Little Star; Codeine – Realize:

mid 1990s > cuddlecore

cultural origins: mid-1990s

A punk-influenced variant of indie pop, prominent in the mid-1990s, was dubbed “cuddlecore”. Led by bands such as cub, Bunnygrunt, and Maow, cuddlecore was marked by harmony vocals and pop melodies atop a punk-style musical backing. Cuddlecore bands were usually, although not always, all-female and essentially represented a more pop-oriented variation on the then-current riot grrrl scene.

Cub – Go Fish; Bunnygrunt – Silly Girl; Maow – Ms. Lefevre (featuring Neko Case):

indie pop > mid 1990s > chamber pop

chamber pop (or ork-pop):

stylistic origins: indie pop / indie rock / lounge / alternative rock / cocktail / baroque pop
cultural origins: mid 1990s

Drawing heavily from the lush, orchestrated work of performers including Brian Wilson, Burt Bacharach, and Lee Hazlewood, Chamber Pop arose largely as a reaction to the lo-fi aesthetic dominant throughout much of the 1990s alternative music community. Inspired in part by the lounge-music revival but with a complete absence of irony or kitsch, chamber pop placed a renewed emphasis on melody and production, as artists layered their baroque, ornate songs with richly textured orchestral strings and horns, all the while virtually denying the very existence of grunge, electronica, and other concurrent musical movements.1“Chamber Pop Music Genre Overview | Allmusic”. Allmusic, 2018, Accessed 22 June 2018.

Mercury Rev – Goddess on a Highway; Belle and Sebastian – I want the world to stop; The Apartments – Mr. Somewhere:

late 1990s > dark rock

dark rock:

stylistic origins: gothic rock / alternative rock / heavy metal
cultural origins: late 1990s, Northern Europe

Dark rock (also known as dark alternative) is a broad style of music that (to varying degrees) generally displays the same musical and lyrical tones as gothic rock, alternative rock, and heavy metal, but is not directly considered a part of the subcultures of any of these genres.

Dark rock music accompanies a variety of concepts and musical styles, though its fundamental characteristics include morose and romantic lyrics often dealing with the subjects of love and death, as well as haunting and gloomy musical atmospheres. Dark rock uses more gothic and alternative rock elements than heavy metal, and compositions use more electronic nuances (especially synthetic pianos) without abandoning metal entirely.

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