Alternative Rock music that didn't cross over into the mainstream(by choice or not) after the "alternative revolution" of the 90's. Typically, the music is relased on small "indie" labels. Indie Rock bands do music that doesn't necessarily appeal to wide mainstream audiences. There are a variety of reasons for this but some of the more common examples are the sound being to raw and abrasive(i.e to much distortion/feedback), the lyrics being to cryptic and abstract or the production and musicianship being to amateurish. In more recent years however some indie bands such as Modest Mouse, The Shins and The White Stripes have found some mainstream success. These bands however are still considered indie because they still have a decidedly non-mainstream sound.
90's indie rock-Pixies, Dinosaur Jr., Pavement, Superchunk, Archers of Loaf, Neutral Milk Hotel, Fugazi, Modest Mouse, Radiohead(controversially)

2000's indie rock-The White Stripes, The Shins, The Arcade Fire, Death Cab for Cutie, The Strokes, Artic Monkeys, Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Subgenres

90's-lo-fi, emo(went mainstream in 2000's), post-hardcore, noise pop, dream pop, neo-psychedelia, shoegaze, indie pop
2000's-garage rock revival, post-punk/new wave revival, freak folk, new weird America, dance punk, indietronica
by Devmeister July 03, 2009

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Independent Rock Music (?):

Generally, a very broad term that has limited use. Most people who like indie rock are too cool to like indie rock, especially now that indie rock is a special feature on a certain cable network.
Many indie rockers/scensters are always in competition with each other. They see each other in public and examine each other, but don't talk. It's one big focked up, confusing, ultra self-consicious nod that hip people give to each other, but never talk about outside the internet. Indie rock nowadays is all about constantly altering your taste, and trying to figure out why you stopped liking all these great bands, but then realizing, "oh yeah, I'm indie rock"
by Chuck October 05, 2003

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also known as independent rock music thank god preps havnt descovered it yet, when they do, indie rock will be ruined.
the most kickass music in the word, kinda underground, most people dont know about it.
by FoolyCooly August 13, 2003

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A way of typing Indy Rock IF YOU CANT SPELL!
Like the previous...
by Sabian June 03, 2004

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A style of music that MtV altered. The true definition of indie rock is music on an independent record label, but commonly misconcepted as a certain sound of high pitched voices and acoustic instruments from bands that are, in fact, on major record labels.
It's indie rock and roll for me!

-The Killers
by Aerienne April 08, 2005

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it is rock music released on an independent label
take 2 bands and compare...the black keys and yo la tengo
do u see any similarity? no u probably dont. thus it isnt rly a genre

listening to indie doesnt make u unique or cool or special
if u like indie, it makes u just as special as liking classic rock, rap, blues etc...people should stop pretending they like indie rock bands, and listen to what they really like....
kid who doesnt know about music: "yea dude i got this new MM album, i semi like the way it sounds but dont appreciate the rly good hard work put into it. look everyone i like indie rock "

kid who knows his stuff: "w.e dude listen to wat u really like, ur wasting ur own time"
by jake56342 February 14, 2009

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Generally, if you know about an indie band you are cool, and if you don't you are mainstream or even whitebread.

So you better learn about the latest indie band before you aren't cool.
I told him I liked Lifehouse and Coldplay and he just called a mainstream whitebread. His insults make no sense... he loves indie rock.
by Fuck You Script Kiddies! September 10, 2006

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Any music that, instead of trying to sound like the popular music of yesteryear, tries to sound like the unpopular music of yesteryear.
The list of Indie Rock artists on Wikipedia includes such illustrious bands as The Unicorns, The Hippos, The Cramps, The Frogs, The Invisibles, The Shins, and Zwan.
by Indiemustbedestroyed September 26, 2005

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