"Emo" is not short for "Emotional." "Emo" does not mean Taking Back Sunday and Dashboard Confessional, despite what MTV has lead you to believe in the last few years. "Emo" is not sidebangs, tight pants, and male vocalists who sing like little girls about their failed relationships. "Emo" is not the use of diluted, meaningless metaphors and similes such as "My arms are like pinecones," and most definitely is not the rampant use of words such as "autumn," "heart," "knife," "bleeding," "leaves," and "razorblade."

I just thought I'd clear that up after all of these "definitions" in which I have encountered an unbelievable amount of people who try to pass off their blatantly false pretenses as fact, and are slowly infecting others with their high-horse, holier-than-thou bullshit. Because honestly, with your ridiculous definitions, Beethoven, George Gershwin, and Britney Spears are/was "emo bands."

Now, onto the real definition.

In the early 90s there was a movement in the hardcore genre that came to be known as "Emotive Hardcore," spearheaded by Rites Of Spring. Harder-core-than-thou kids, who swore by Dischord Records a la Minor Threat, actually coined the term "Emo" as something of a put-down for the kids who really liked Rites Of Spring, Indian Summer and this new wave of "Emotive" Hardcore bands. That's right, "Emo" was once not something kids called themselves. The field exploded outwards from there - Level-Plane Records has always been the most famous Emo label. Acts like Yaphet Kotto, I Hate Myself, Saetia, Hot Cross, A Day In Black And White, Funeral Diner, I Would Set Myself On Fire For You, You And I, and hosts of others came in the next decade. Most emo bands have since broken up, but there's still the occasional hold-out (again, the majority of Level-Plane Records' roster has been a procession of emo acts). Like most DIY hardcore/punk of the time, a majority found its way onto vinyl and not much else. Some people consider bands like Fugazi, and later Sunny Day Real Estate, a progression of emo, but personally, I don't quite follow that philosophy.

Often, more recently, this gets intertwined with post-hardcore, and understandably so - that's nothing to make an issue of, since well shit, at least it's close.

Since the late 90s, though, bands have been emerging in the vein of Taking Back Sunday, Dashboard Confessional, and the thousands of their clones. As far as I can tell, some lazy journalist somewhere, writing an article about them, decided "Well, fuck, no one knows what emo is anyways, so I'll call these bands "emo" - sounds more appealing than bubblegum pop rock..." and the spiral continued downwards into the current amalgomation of bands MTV has told everyone is "emo."

Somehow, people decided that "emo" meant "emotional," which is obviously bullshit, as 99% of bands make music to illicit emotion, which would make "emotional" a completely all-encompassing genre from classical to opera to pop to rap.


Hope that helps.
Taking Back Sunday, Senses Fail, and My Chemical Romance falls under the "horrible pop rock" genre, not the emo genre.

Rites of Spring is emo.
by Chelsea March 02, 2005
See "Fag", "Faget", "Pussy", "Pansy", and my favorite "Suicidal Retard".
"Look at those Emo Fags over there, Johhny!", Johhny's Mother said.

Johhny replies, "Eww! Mother, Why are there such people on Earth?"

"Because America sucks ass and no one has common sense or a sense of humor anymore and people fuck their cousins." Replies Johhny's Mother.

"OH! Now I understand!", Says Johhny.

"No Johhny, no one understands... No one.", Johhny's Mother explains.
by VoorheesBoy April 01, 2007
Girls:
-Choppy black hair that is always in their eyes
-Heavy eyeliner
-Ultra tight/Ripped pants
-Scars on their wrists/arm/thigh
-They complain about the world and themselves
-Needs a reality check

Boys:
-Choppy black hair that is always in their eyes
-Wears makeup
-Wears tight girl pants
-They cry into their hair
-Scars on their wrists/arm/thigh
-They complain about the world and themselves
-Needs a reality check
Emo Boy: "I hate my life."
Emo Girl: "I hate my life more. Lets cut ourselves and cry together. Then take pictures and put them on myspace."

by jetplanes July 17, 2006
Emo, short for Emotional. Pretty much your definition right there. A whole bunch of sorrow filled people, who listen to downtrodden music which lyrics usually consist of groans and moans of past relationships that went wrong and they take there pain to the extreme. Typically "cutters" or, people who cut themselves when they are upset to release their emotional pain (which is very unhealthy by the way.) Majority of Emo's are homo/bi-sexual. Usually "Punks" do not get along with them. ("Indie sux, hard-line sux, EMO SUX, you suck!"-Antiflag)
Emo bands include, but are not limited to: my chemical romance, the used, and taking back sunday.
by Steven Hanaway June 26, 2006
EMO: a Corprate Fad. Poser Punk. Rich spoiled kids who wear girl pants. True punks bet them up because EMOs are so dumb.
Hey you want to pick on the EMO.

I hate that rich EMO faggot.

EMO music sounds like shit.

That stupid EMO thinks EMO is punk.
by Cookies the other batch April 18, 2006
Someone who is white, middle class -in my experience you do not get black emos- and quite intellegent. they have either black or dyed black hair. they come in varying degrees of hardcoreness from area to area; in my area an emo is just someone who is not a chav and not a nerd.

Emos attitude towards chavs: as emos are cleverer than chavs, they tend to treat them as lesser lifeforms.

some Emos also attend the sort of partieis that are thouht to be dodgy.
emos are people who are white, middle class and quite intellegent.
by drtom who is a lord January 10, 2009
faggot punk wannabes who like penis in and around their mouths.
Fallout Boy is just another no-talent emo bender band, they are not punk.
by Sam Corey June 12, 2008
A type of music that angsty teens listen to while they pretend to cut themselves.

Not hard enough to be called Punk but not bubble gum enough to be called pop. Imagine if Punk, Pop, and a little bit Goth got together and had a child. Emo is what you would get every time because it takes a little bit of everything.

Just take one band and switch the names around and you basically have every emo band imaginable. The same whiny sounding lead singer, the same sounding guitar solos, the same lyrics just in a different order.
Those people who say that My Chemical Romance is emo don't know the physiological level there music is really on. Wow, those guys are so deep and bruting.
by MrBrightside919 April 29, 2008

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