Music

The Best Dream Pop Bands 

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Updated June 14, 2019 7.5k votes 763 voters 44.4k views 160 items

Coined in the 1980s, dream pop rose to prominence in that decade and was generally used to describe shoegaze. However, over the years dream pop has evolved to define dream pop bands as those who use ambient, melodic sounds with breathy vocals to create a wall of noise. Over the years, dream pop bands have grown in popularity and can often times be seen at music festivals. Though a subgenre of alternative music, dream pop music is known for focusing on atmospheric and mood sounds and focuses on imagery.

So, what are the best dream pop bands? Any list of dream pop groups has to include the likes of Beach House, Cocteau Twins, M83, Sigur Ros and Slowdive. These bands are widely considered at enhancing dream pop's profile and bringing it to a wider audience. Though it's been called anti-rock for it's use of trip hop, slowcore and post-rock, dream pop bands are minimalist by nature and that helps explain why listeners are often taken into a trance-like state when they listen to the music.

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best dream pop groups. If you see a dream pop band that isn't on this list, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best dream pop bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest dream pop musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular dream pop bands that you might've heard of. (160 items)
list ordered by
1
Beach House is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
2
Cocteau Twins is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
3
Slowdive is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
4
Lush is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
5
Sigur Rós is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
6
The Arcana is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
*DSO* added

Albums: Lemon Freddy Phantom of the Sky (2017)

Tomorrow is Yesterday (2016)

7
M83 is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
8
Tame Impala is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
9
The Sundays is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
10
The xx is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
11
Galaxie 500 is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
12
The Church is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
13
Ride is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
14
Hope Sandoval is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
15
This Mortal Coil is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
16
Mojave 3 is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
17
Elizabeth Fraser is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
18
Air is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
19
Spiritualized is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
20
Julee Cruise is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
21
Kitchens of Distinction ... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
22
The Chameleons is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
23
The Jesus and Mary Chain... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
24
Swervedriver is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands
25
Yo La Tengo is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Dream Pop Bands