Indie music scene

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An independent music scene is a localized independent music-oriented (or, more specifically, indie rock/indie pop-oriented) community of bands and their audiences. Local scenes can play a key role in musical history and lead to the development of influential genres; for example, No Wave from New York City, Madchester from Manchester, and Grunge from Seattle.

List of indie scenes per region[edit]

Africa[edit]

South Africa[edit]

Australia and New Zealand[edit]

Australia[edit]

  • Melbourne: Melbourne has the largest music scene in Australia and more venues per capita than any other city in the world. Melbourne's music has always been healthy but the arrival of Punk in the late 70s, and then cheap electronic musical instruments saw an explosion of artistic and original music that was not hindered by genre. The Boys Next Door launched The Birthday Party and the careers of Nick Cave and Rowland S. Howard. The Birthday Party's uncompromising music and performances made them the most influential independent Rock band of all time and their legacy continues to influence the international scene. Simultaneously Ollie Olsen's Whirly Wirld, the Primitive Calculators and the Little Bands, and other bands brought monophonic synthesisers, rhythm machines and other non-Rock instruments to the scene. Melbourne music maintain a high profile in Europe
  • Sydney: While the independent music scene in Sydney was once second only to Melbourne's, it has suffered from a lack of suitable venues for the last decade or so. Many pubs and clubs are alleged to have found it more profitable to offer gambling machines rather than live music, but a complex and live-music-hostile regulatory environment has also contributed.[1][dated info]. Some examples include: Pnau, Deep Sea Arcade.

New Zealand[edit]

North America[edit]

Canada[edit]

United States[edit]

  • Washington, D.C.: Although the D.C. area was the original home to notable musicians ranging from Duke Ellington and Marvin Gaye to Jim Morrison, Mama Cass and Nils Lofgren, by the 1960s there was little musical infrastructure in D.C. to support a local scene of musicians that would achieve national renown, and most local musicians who sought success or influence went to cities such as New York, Detroit or Los Angeles to pursue their careers. Gaye, for instance, became an innovator and global star of R&B but went to Motown Records before achieving major renown. One rare example of a local scene at the time was the Takoma Park folk scene, centered on the independent self-releases of John Fahey, an acoustic-based artist with both a traditional orientation and an experimental inclination. This scene had little commercial impact at the time, even in the D.C. area, and its artistic influence on underground musicians such as Sonic Youth occurred over a longer term. In the 1970s, however, the majority African American city and its surrounding suburbs such as Prince George's County, Maryland developed a homegrown type of dance-oriented, African-influenced funk music called Go-go, which became highly popular among local residents, though it failed to attract significant national or global attention as compared with other forms of dance music at the time. Go-go artists of major importance in its early years included Rare Essence, Trouble Funk and E.U., with Chuck Brown being the figure most commonly associated with the movement from then to the present. A local infrastructure of independent stores and labels released Go-go music, and local radio stations played it. The late 1970s and early 1980s also marked the birth of a punk rock-inspired independent music scene in the nation's capital which would prove highly influential on other musicians around the country and the world, providing the first independent rock scene in Washington, D.C. and one of the earliest in the U.S. Bad Brains helped to put D.C. on the map with a sound that merged reggae and soul with hard guitars to develop the musically and politically subversive genre of hardcore punk. D.C. resident Henry Rollins, who also came out of the hardcore punk scene, joined the highly influential band Black Flag and became their frontman. Perhaps most importantly, Ian Mackaye and Jeff Nelson founded Dischord Records, originally to release their own groundbreaking hardcore punk recordings with bands such as Teen Idles and Minor Threat. By the later 1980s, Dischord had maintained its firmly independent ethic even as it became a D.C. institution. Meanwhile, its bands such as Embrace and Rites of Spring had developed beyond the hardcore sound to an emotionally raw and more melodic, but still abrasive music which eventually attracted the tag "emo-core" or "emo," which would widely influence alternative rock music in the 1990s and 2000s. The first wave of D.C. independent musicians gradually moved on to developing post-hardcore styles. Members of different Dischord bands were united in the MacKaye-fronted Fugazi, who existed from the 1980s to early 2000s and became a prototypical independent band in their business model. Musically, the band also marked a new era for the D.C. scene, drawing from a range of sounds from hardcore punk to dub and funk; Fugazi are often identified as D.C.'s most influential band along with Minor Threat, Bad Brains and Black Flag, although the band, like other Dischord acts, often recorded not in D.C. but in studios in Arlington, in Northern Virginia. Dave Grohl, a Northern Virginia resident who played in local punk bands such as Scream, joined Seattle-based grunge band Nirvana in 1990, a year before their massive commercial breakthrough; after Nirvana's breakup, Grohl, though no longer based in the area, had continued mainstream success with Foo Fighters, who wrote songs about the D.C. and Northern Virginia area. By the 1990s, as alternative rock went mainstream, Dischord bands such as Shudder to Think began to receive mainstream attention and some signed with major labels, though the label (and Fugazi) remained firmly independent and continues to release musicians who are rooted locally. Because of the unique musical heritage of African Americans in D.C., which included more influence from Afro-funk and Caribbean music, D.C.-based hip hop artists often strugged to find success outside the area, though Wale finally reversed this trend somewhat. Go-go, after a number of failed attempts to expand outside the D.C. area, finally experienced brief mainstream success in the early 2000s, when go-go producer Rich Harrison was called to make beats for prominent R&B acts, resulting in crossover Go-go hits such as Beyoncé's "Crazy in Love," a smash featuring a rap from her then-boyfriend and later-husband Jay-Z, and Amerie's "1 Thing." Though originally of Baltimore, Maryland, the indie rock act Animal Collective maintained strong connections to the D.C. area, naming their breakthrough album after a local live venue.
  • Omaha, Nebraska: Omaha has created a large Indie Scene for the past 15 years. Most bands are from the Indie label Saddle Creek Records. Some notable bands include Bright Eyes, Cursive, Neva Dinova, Rilo Kiley, and The Faint. Omaha's success in the Indie music industry has to do with the success that Conor Oberst has had in the mainstream. Conor is also a co-creator of Saddle Creek along with his brother, Justin.
  • Akron, Ohio: Akron folk tend to lean more towards a garage rock scene, primarily influenced by the Black Keys, a blues rock band from Akron, Ohio. Many garage rock/blues rock indie bands are signed to various independent labels in the Highland Square area.

South America[edit]

Chile[edit]

From Santiago comes the acts Anita Tijoux, Astro, Javiera Mena, Gepe and Álex Anwandter, while Dënver is a band from Valparaiso.

Asia[edit]

South Korea[edit]

Despite the huge popularity of K-pop (Korean Pop), there is also a great Indie scene in South Korea. It is sometimes referred as K-Indie as a neologism inspired by K-pop. The heart of the Korean indie scene is in Hongdae area where indie acoustic, rock, house, electro and also underground hip-hop artists flourish amongst young niche listeners. 'Sound Day' is held in Hongdae area every 2nd Friday of the month. It is a festive day that is dedicated to the indie scene with discounts on numerous indie performances and access to enter various stages throughout the day. Although it is overshadowed by the mainstream music in Korea, it has gained some degree of international exposure through the internet via YouTube. Some of the renowned indie bands/artists include The RockTigers, 10cm, Lucite Tokki, Yozo, Miniature Acacia Band, Jang Jae-in and Sweetpea. The indie record label Pastel Music has been greatly contributing the outlet of indie bands.

More information about Korean indie music in English can be found at such websites as Korean Indie and the Korea Gig Guide. In Korean, the main indie websites are Weiv and Scatterbrain, while a Korean-language music Wiki is at Krrr.

Japan[edit]

Main article: Japanese rock

The indie music scene in Japan is very active and features bands like the pillows, Asian Kung–Fu Generation, ogre you asshole, Straightener, Sakanaction, Acidman, fujifabric and Beat Crusaders among Many others. Expanded list of some Japanese indie rock bands

Europe[edit]

Austria[edit]

Known indierock venues in Vienna are the Rhiz, Flex and Fluc. Yearly the Donau Festival focused on experimental rock and indie rock takes place in the spring. Acts from Austria: Killed by 9V Batteries.

Belgium[edit]

Main article: Belgian rock

The indie music scene in Belgium is mainly active in the three biggest cities Antwerpen, Ghent and Brussels.

France[edit]

Main article: French rock

Germany[edit]

The Netherlands[edit]

The indie music scene in the Netherlands is mainly active in the four biggest cities Amsterdam, The Hague, Rotterdam and Utrecht as well as the northern cities Groningen and Leeuwarden. See Dutch rock#Indie rock for a brief overview of bands, organisations, venues, festivals that create and are connected to the Dutch scene.

Norway[edit]

There have been indie music coming out of Oslo such as Lukestar. From the city of Haugesund comes Susanne Sundfør and from Tromsø Röyksopp. Also the city of Bergen has markable acts, such as Casiokids, Datarock, Kings of Convenience, Annie and Sondre Lerche.

Poland[edit]

Spain[edit]

Some of the renowned indie bands/artists include Family, Los Planetas, Nacho Vegas, Love of Lesbian, Antònia Font, Triangulo de Amor Bizarro and El Guincho.

Sweden[edit]

Main article: Swedish Indie Pop

Many Swedish indie musicians have become famous world-side. Most singing in English. The Cardigans gained early success in the mid-1990s. Some notable acts include: The Sounds, Lykke Li, Robyn, The Tallest Man on Earth, The Hives, Eskobar, The Soundtrack of Our Lives, Kent, First Aid Kit, Air France, Jens Lekman, The Knife, Shout Out Louds, The Radio Dept., Fever Ray, The Tough Alliance, Life on Earth, Avner and Ram Di Dam.

United Kingdom[edit]

  • The first indie music scene is recognized as having started in the United Kingdom, with the release of the C86 cassette, a 1986 NME compilation featuring Primal Scream and other bands.[17] The significance of C86 is recognized in the subtitle of its 2006 extended reissue: CD86: 48 Tracks from the Birth of Indie Pop. C86 was a document of the UK indie scene at the start of 1986, and it gave its name to the indie pop scene that followed, which was a major influence on the development of indie music as a whole.[18] Significant record labels included Creation, Subway and Glass.[19]
  • The shoegazing scene of the late 1980s was named for band members' tendency to stare at their feet and guitar effects pedals onstage rather than interact with the audience. My Bloody Valentine and others created a loud "wash of sound" that obscured vocals and melodies with long, droning riffs, distortion, and feedback.[20] Within the same decade, labels such as Cheree Records and Ché Trading amalgamated into an entity that the industry now refers to as Rocket Girl, which has since contributed significantly.[21]
  • The end of the 1980s saw the Madchester scene. Based around The Haçienda, a nightclub in Manchester owned by New Order and Factory Records, Madchester bands such as Happy Mondays and The Stone Roses mixed acid house dance rhythms, Northern soul and funk with melodic guitar pop.[22]
  • The Britpop scene developed in the early 1990s as part of a larger British cultural movement called Cool Britannia. In the wake of the musical invasion into the UK of American grunge bands, British bands positioned themselves as an opposing musical force. Influenced by the key British band of the 1980s, The Smiths, and adopting the unashamed commercial approach to which the C86 bands had seemed sometimes ideologically opposed, Britpop acts such as Pulp, Oasis and Blur referenced British guitar music of the past and aimed at writing about British topics and concerns.[23]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "The trouble with Sydney". The Age (Melbourne). 2005-12-16. 
  2. ^ http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-05-22/100-songs-in-100-hours/4025926
  3. ^ Staff, Bryan & Ashley, Sheran (2002) For the record: A history of the recording industry in New Zealand. Auckland: David Bateman. ISBN 1-86953-508-1. p. 144.
  4. ^ Armstrong, Stephen (May 11, 2008). "New Zealand, pop mecca?". London: timesonline.co.uk. 
  5. ^ John, Zeiss (2007-09-11). "Earlimart: Steering Silver Lake's ship". Prefix Magazine. Retrieved 2008-12-22. 
  6. ^ Dicks, Brett Leigh (2006-09-28). "The Watson Twins Display their Southern Manners". Faster Louder. Retrieved 2008-12-22. 
  7. ^ http://www.chicagoindieradio.org
  8. ^ http://www.mtv.com/videos/news/202944/the-noise-from-brooklyn.jhtml#id=1579482
  9. ^ Clark, Taylor (2007-09-11). "Why Portland is America's indie rock Mecca. – By Taylor Clark – Slate Magazine". Slate.com. Retrieved 2010-09-08. 
  10. ^ "Sense Of Place: Discover Portland's Music Scene". NPR.org. 2012-03-13. 
  11. ^ notification edition 2009 on Pitchfork Media
  12. ^ http://www.thevine.com.au/music/articles/interview-_-peaches.aspx
  13. ^ http://pitchfork.com/features/interviews/7437-liars/
  14. ^ [1]
  15. ^ http://www.2009.off-festival.pl/
  16. ^ http://pitchfork.com/news/34355-pitchfork-curates-a-stage-at-primavera-sound-festival/
  17. ^ N. Hasted (27 October 2006), "How an NME cassette launched indie music", Independent.co.uk, archived from the original on 27 April 2011 
  18. ^ M. Hann (23 April 2001), "Fey City Rollers", guardian.co.uk, archived from the original on 27 April 2011 
  19. ^ N. Abebe (24 October 2005), "Twee as Fuck: The Story of Indie Pop", Pitchfork Media, archived from the original on 24 February 2011 
  20. ^ "Shoegaze", Allmusic, archived from the original on 24 February 2011 
  21. ^ Gourlay, Dom. "Surviving the underground: DiS meets Vinita Joshi of Rocket Girl Records". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 11 September 2012. 
  22. ^ "Madchester", Allmusic, archived from the original on 27 April 2011 
  23. ^ Harris, John. Britpop!: Cool Britannia and the Spectacular Demise of English Rock. Da Capo Press, 2004. Pg. 202. ISBN 0-306-81367-X