Top 10 Classic Alternative Bands
The Top Ten
With Morrissey's ability to write songs that would inspire countless other Indie bands through future generations, and Johnny Marr's intricately played, original, hooky guitar riffs, that would inspire the same from guitarists, The Smiths started something in attitude, sound and great live gigs, that few would ever again duplicate. - Bside76
I don't like the music they have done, but they should be there too. No one can argue that they're not one of the most famous British "Classic Alternative Bands" ever. Still, The Smiths are too poppy and I find them and their music too boring. For me it's like watching a Woody Allen movie. Not my taste.
The songwriting partnership of Morrissey and Marr is one of the greatest ever. Mike Joyce and Andy Rourke are possibly the most underrated rhythm section and the inspired so many from Noel Gallagher to Bernard Butler.
The Smiths were an amazing band- they seem to stand out against the crap 80s pop that dominated the British charts during the 1980s. They were real people who wrote songs for real people. Irreplaceable.
I usually refrain from voting for the winner (i rarely agree, and it is a bit pointless anyway) but the Velvet Underground were so groundbreaking, only rivalled by Captain Beefheart for the most experimental and influential artist of the sixties. "Sister Ray" may be the greatest song of all time.
The ones that started it all. The Velvets mark may not have been left on the charts, but instead left in countless songwriters, bands and artists, music or other, everywhere you look. Every origin in alternative music can be found here. - Bside76
Sorry nirvana I don't even like reed but his band is awesome
Like them or not, they are kind of classic
Although different genre, you should put Joy Division and New order joint first, with Velvet Underground second and a bit of Kraftwerk.
Seriously comparing Nirvana to Joy Division should not be done as not in the same Galaxy let alone same list is absurd. Yes. Velvet Underground were certainly influential but comparing them genius lyricist that underpinned Joy Division, leads to a feeling of relegation in terms of comparison. Also what are the Smiths doing on here above New order?
Originators of the alternative sound we all know today, Joy Division's influence can be heard in every moody, energetic, self reflecting and angst ridden band or song since 1979. Everyone from Bono to Robert Smith owe a great deal to Ian Curtis's stage antics and presence. - Bside76
The Velvet Underground is an excellent choice but Joy Division is even a better one. Others should be there in the list such as Cabaret Voltaire, The Sisters of Mercy, and Einsturzende Neubauten. - n00w
Velvet Underground sounded more "rock" (using that umbrella of a word loosely) if anything, and The Smiths were most definitely Indie Rock, "jangly" Alternative above all. Joy Division, by contrast, was the very rock; the core of alternative music.
They were never "easy" to listen to, most of the lyrics were some sort of puzzle to most, their music in general is not at all exciting to the average person��"this made them an "alternative"; an escape route from the norm to enter a realm where meaning and "good music" and a gentle, sweet melody is not always the answer. Where cloudy melodies, dark music, painful words flourish and give the listen an alternative to conforming��"a breathtaking individuality; a "alternative" hope.
Alt tunings, alt song structure, and alt use of feedback and noise. These guy practically invented alternative. Much respect to all the bands on this list though. - mikeford
When Robert Smith started The Cure, he envisioned his band as more "Buzzcocks" than "Banshees", but it was the meeting and eventual playing with those very Banshees, that would transform The Cure into a powerhouse of moody lyrics, guitar driven anthems, and catchy pop hits on the darker side. Like Siouxsie, Robert Smiths devoted, look a like fans are everywhere, and so is the cures music to this day. - Bside76
The ultimate masters of Avant Garde Rock music.
The parents of new wave!
An enormous band in alternative scene!
Once in a lifetime, road to nowhere, burning down the house!
Huh, why are Nirvana at number 8, Joy Division do not appear in top albums of all time, best bands of all time, essential albums you must own, best songs of all time. Nirvana are possible the best band of all time. I like Joy Division but come on!
They may be alternative, but in no way classic.
This Band is the Best Ever!
This should be number 1... Who made this list?
Starting out as a pop group of the new romantic scene, Depeche mode was considered a light weight act, doomed to have a short career. 30 plus years on, DM's brand of pop has sold over 100 million albums and have influenced countless Techno and alternative bands everywhere. With there now classic lineup of Gahan, Gore, Wilder and Fletcher, they found a darker, more intelligent brand of Techno pop, ready to take on the masses and succeed. - Bside76
Following the breakup of fellow Manchester band The Smiths, The Stone Roses set out to conquer all. The influence of this band can be heard and seen in any Brit pop and indie band of the 90's that came after their split. They had great songs like "Waterfall", "Fools gold" and "I wanna be adored", that paved a new path for future bands. Oasis might owe the most to this band and they know it. - Bside76
Ian Brown is a god, so good! Their songs are all meaningful and really well distrobuted! Quality! Love from Lebanon
What idiot put Nirvana on this list. They're grunge, end of story. Anyway REM is awesome, 'enough said.
#1 on list
Radiohead should be in the top ten at the very least!
Jane's Addiction is the most original, spiritually beautiful and unique rock band of al time. They are also one of the ABSOLUTE best. Even though they got pretty big in the early 90s they should have been MUCH bigger. But most people can't appreciate something this unique and intense.
One of the best
Very influential for the 90s they were influential to almost any Grunge or Alternative band.Their sons was basically 80s goth,metal,psychedelic,metal,punk,folk,and even Funk occasionally.Perry founded Lollapalooza.Dave Navarro is a great guitarist.Ritual De La Habitiual is there best album.
It's not enough to have Joy Division on the list. New Order should be there, too. Blue Monday, "best-selling 12-inch single of all time" according to Wikipedia, has also been one of the most remixed songs ever. Thousands of bands and performers wouldn't have been inspired to make music without them. - n00w
There have been many "strong" women in music before, but maybe no one was ever as blatantly, unapologetic and in your face about it as Siouxsie Sioux was and is to this day. Writing the dark tunes that would inspire countless imitators, some good and some not, the banshees not only made their lasting mark, but wrote made great albums like "The Scream", "Through the looking glass", "Juju" and many more, along the way. - Bside76
Classic. Sorry, but the music of one of the most amazing alt. bands will be around much longer than the fad "alt." bands of today.
I like listen to the music since their first album if your're feeling sinister.
My favourite songs are: me and the major, I'm waking up to us...
They are perhaps the most industrial of all industrial bands, in the true sense of the term. Blixa Bargeld is a smart and clever, accomplished artist. He's done many other genres, is a movie director, and has contributed to the success of Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, another legendary post-punk rock band. If you don't know E. Be. You should probably give a try. - n00w
Way too underrated
Mr. Cave's voice is so dark and intense! And I absolutely love their controversial album, Murder Ballads! :D
Lots of people will say they're goth but they just consider themselves as a mainstream alternative rock band. And what rock band! I can't quote one song that they have done bad. Everything is ranked from good to excellent. - n00w
This is true goth! And I think they are damn unique and good! My #1 :D
Quoting them as one of the main initiators of the "Industrial" genre isn't giving enough credit to this legendary band. They invented sampling, they even pushed the boundaries of their creativity to implement James Brown's soul music into pieces that are still avant garde compared to what we usually hear today. Richard H. Kirk has always been a true visionary. - n00w