Indie rock is a genre of alternative rock music that originated in the United States and United Kingdom in the 1980s. The term "indie" is short for "independent," referring to the independent record labels that produced and distributed the music. Indie rock music is characterized by several distinctive features that set it apart from other genres.
One characteristic of indie rock music is its emphasis on guitar-driven melodies and rhythms. The guitar is often the main instrument in indie rock music, and it is used to create a variety of sounds and textures, from jangly riffs to distorted power chords. Drums and bass are also important components of indie rock music, providing the foundation for the guitar and vocals.
Another characteristic of indie rock music is its DIY ethos. Indie rock musicians and bands often record and produce their music independently, without the backing of a major record label. This allows them to maintain creative control over their music and to create a more personal, authentic sound. Indie rock music is also often associated with a particular subculture or community, with fans and musicians sharing a common set of values and ideals.
Lyrics are also an important aspect of indie rock music. Many indie rock songs feature introspective, personal lyrics that explore themes of love, loss, and identity. The lyrics may be abstract or poetic, but they often convey a sense of vulnerability and authenticity that resonates with listeners.
Indie rock music is also known for its experimentation and eclecticism. Many indie rock musicians draw on a wide range of musical influences, from punk and post-punk to folk, country, and electronic music. This results in a diverse and constantly evolving sound that defies easy categorization.
In conclusion, indie rock music is characterized by its guitar-driven melodies and rhythms, DIY ethos, introspective lyrics, and eclectic sound. These distinctive features have helped indie rock music to remain a vital and influential genre for over three decades. Sources for this information include articles from Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, and NPR.