The Best Alternative Bands/Artists

50k votes 5.8k voters 193k views 586 items tags f p @
At the end of the 1980s, at the peak of glam rock and hair metal, a new genre began to emerge from the underground. Since it served as an option to the bloated sound of those genres that was all over the airwaves and MTV, it was aptly titled alternative rock. Over the years, alternative rock has become part of mainstream rock. But at its beginning, alt rock and all of the alternative artists were on the cutting edge of what was going on in response to those more commercial genres. The origins of the best alternative bands are in cities like Seattle, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and various college towns around the country.

So, who can be considered one of the top alternative bands, or even a good alternative band? Any list isn't complete without Husker Du and R.E.M., who represent the best college rock musicians. These alternative music bands had a huge impact on the alternative scene and influenced many, if not all alternative rock bands. Jane's Addiction can also be lumped into that category. Other popular alternative artists include Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Oasis, Blur and Smashing Pumpkins. These groups' legacy and impact on alternative music is indisputable and they continue to crank out the hits.

Who is on your top 100 alternative bands list? We know this list isn't 100 bands/artists long. . . we did that on purpose because we're alternative.

Ultimately, it's up to you to decide what is the best alternative band. If you think an alternative artist or band isn't on here and should, feel free to add them to this list. This list answers the questions "who are the best alternative bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest alternative musician ever?"
Collection Photo: via wikimedia
  • 18 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • 2 See list ranked by
Z
G Options B Comments & Embed 2rerank list
  1. 1
    + 1,537
    - 497

    the people's #1 & most listed
    Rock music, Grunge, Alternative rock

    ;
  2. 2
    + 1,032
    - 476

    added by but chickens double d
    Rock music, Electronic music, New Prog

    ;
  3. 3
    + 1,169
    - 508

    added by CilasLee
    Classic rock, Jazz-funk, Rock music

    ;
  4. 4
    + 842
    - 321

    added by FabianMariani
    Rock music, Post-grunge, Alternative rock

    ;
  5. 5
    + 714
    - 401

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Rock music, Grunge, Post-grunge

    ;
  6. 6
    + 1,101
    - 486

    added by but chickens double d
    Pop punk, Rock music, Alternative rock

    ;
  7. 7
    + 597
    - 352

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Jangle pop, Alternative rock, College rock

    ;
  8. 8
    + 479
    - 285

    often listed & added by but chickens double d
    Jangle pop, Indie pop, Alternative rock

    ;
  9. 9
    + 944
    - 416

    ranked low on reranks & added by RobDiLorenzo
    Trip hop, Dance-punk, Garage rock

    ;
  10. 10
    + 692
    - 340


    Shoegazing, Gothic rock, Alternative rock

    ;
  11. 11
    + 807
    - 363

    added by RobDiLorenzo
    Space rock, Rock music, Electronic music

    ;
  12. 12
    + 497
    - 169

    ranked low on reranks & added by ryanjjjj8
    Pop punk, Synthpop, New Wave

    ;
  13. 13
    + 566
    - 277

    added by but chickens double d
    Pop punk, Rock music, Garage rock

    ;
  14. 14
    + 500
    - 210

    added by muzziac
    Blues-rock, Punk blues, Rock music

    ;
  15. 15
    + 883
    - 480


    Rock music, Piano rock, Post-Britpop

    ;
  16. 16
    + 383
    - 201

    added by but chickens double d
    Pop punk, Ska punk, Rock music

    ;
  17. 17
    + 418
    - 228


    Experimental rock, Grunge, Noise

    ;
  18. 18
    + 416
    - 181

    added by FabianMariani
    Gothic rock, Alternative rock, Post-punk

    ;
  19. 19
    + 466
    - 217

    added by but chickens double d
    Blues-rock, Punk blues, Rock music

    ;
  20. 20
    + 328
    - 165

    added by ryanjjjj8
    Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Synthpop

    ;
  21. 21
    + 300
    - 173


    Dark ambient, Industrial metal, Electronic music

    ;
  22. 22
    + 491
    - 252


    Rock music, Britpop, Alternative rock

    ;
  23. 23
    + 507
    - 172

    ranked low on reranks & added by ryanjjjj8
    Pop punk, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  24. 24
    + 378
    - 253

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Rock music, Grunge, Heavy metal

    ;
  25. 25
    + 396
    - 233

    added by RobDiLorenzo
    Garage rock, Power pop, Alternative rock

    ;
  26. 26
    + 352
    - 168

    added by FabianMariani
    Rock music, Grunge, Alternative rock

    ;
  27. 27
    + 345
    - 170

    often listed & added by but chickens double d
    Crossover thrash, Nu metal, Political hip hop

    ;
  28. 28
    + 350
    - 123

    ranked low on reranks & added by but chickens double d
    Punk blues, Garage rock, Garage punk

    ;
  29. 29
    + 366
    - 224

    often listed & added by but chickens double d
    Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Rock music

    ;
  30. 30
    + 549
    - 242

    added by ryanjjjj8
    Pop punk, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  31. 31
    + 428
    - 157

    added by ryanjjjj8
    Pop punk, Rock music, Skate punk

    ;
  32. 32
    + 625
    - 267

    added by BayzidAnando
    Hip hop music, Nu metal, Rock music

    ;
  33. 33
    + 296
    - 188

    added by rodrincubus
    Rock music, Desert rock, Experimental rock

    ;
  34. 34
    + 402
    - 288

    added by but chickens double d
    Rock music, Alternative rock, Punk rock

    ;
  35. 35
    + 266
    - 149

    added by but chickens double d
    Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

    ;
  36. 36
    + 336
    - 170

    added by Qanea
    Nu metal, Progressive metal, Rock music

    ;
  37. 37
    + 184
    - 93

    added by ryanjjjj8
    New Wave, Rock music, Punk funk

    ;
  38. 38
    + 237
    - 121

    added by muzziac
    Alternative hip hop, Anti-folk, Country rap

    ;
  39. 39
    + 243
    - 176


    Noise rock, Rock music, No wave

    ;
  40. 40
    + 217
    - 130

    added by but chickens double d
    Rock music, Grunge, Neo-psychedelia

    ;
  41. 41
    + 222
    - 141


    Indie pop, Shoegazing, Pop music

    ;
  42. 42
    + 231
    - 150

    added by rodrincubus
    Nu metal, Rock music, Experimental rock

    ;
  43. 43
    + 69
    - 16

    added by but chickens double d
    Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave

    ;
  44. 44
    + 316
    - 201

    added by DavidJohnson
    Pop punk, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  45. 45
    + 180
    - 116

    added by ryanjjjj8
    Hip hop music, Pop punk, Alternative hip hop

    ;
  46. 46
    + 271
    - 121

    ranked low on reranks & added by juliocaesar7080
    Pop punk, Rock music, Emo

    ;
  47. 47
    + 185
    - 102


    Post-metal, Metal, Progressive metal

    ;
  48. 48
    + 239
    - 128

    added by kanyonrocks
    Nu metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  49. 49
    + 155
    - 120

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Rock music, Grunge, Heavy metal

    ;
  50. 50
    + 159
    - 91

    added by ryanjjjj8
    Melodic hardcore, Alternative rock, Positive hardcore

    ;
587 +

Something missing? Add it!

1 - 50 of 586

L List Options 2 Rerank List B Comments & Embed z Share Next List >