Most people have a horribly limited idea of what emo is, simply because the most important records in the development of emo were largely released on on vinyl, in small numbers, and with limited distribution. These were however very influential, so nowadays you have the situation that a lot of kids listen to third- and fourth-generation emo styles without even knowing it. I hope to expose such people to a wealth of great preceding music that's getting easier to find all the time...

After Minor Threat broke up in late 1983, the vibrant DC hardcore-punk scene that exploded in 1981 seems to start to run out of steam and fresh ideas within the established DC hardcore sound. The wistful, posthumous Minor Threat 7" "Salad Days" comes out in 1984 and drives the final nail into the coffin of DC hardcore punk. Bands all over the country begin casting about for new things to do : DRI and Bad Brains start going cheeze-metal, New York bands start doing tough-guy mosh, 7Seconds goes jangly U2 alternative, etc. The prevailing change in D.C. is toward melodic rock with punk sensibilities.

1984 marks the release of Zen Arcade by Minneapolis band Hüsker Dü, documenting their new mature sound combining furious, intense vocal delivery and driving guitars with slowed-down rockish tempos and more-complex, melodic songwriting.

In spring 1984, a new band called Rites Of Spring forms from members of The Untouchables/Faith and Deadline. This band retains a punk speed and frenzy, but brings a totally new vocal approach to the mix. Singer Guy Picciotto keeps an out-of-breath punk style most of the time, at times delving into intensely personal lyrics dripping with emotion and sweat. His voice breaks down at climactic moments into a throaty, gravelly, passionate moan.

The summer of 1985 becomes known as "Revolution Summer" when a new wave of rock-tempo, melody based, sung-vocal bands forms out of the DC punk musician pool with diverse rock sounds - Three, Gray Matter, Soulside, Ignition, Marginal Man, Fire Party, Rain, Shudder to Think, etc. Few bands retain the fast hardcore punk-based sound with the new vocal approach, Dag Nasty being the notable exception.

Minor Threat's singer, Ian MacKaye's, sings for a band called Embrace (compare the band name to earlier DC bands Minor Threat, Void, and State Of Alert) whose lyrics are emotional and deeply self-questioning, but still clear and unambiguous. Musically, the group (formed mostly of ex-Faith members) writes midtempo, somewhat jangly music with a lot of pop guitar hooks. MacKaye's vocals retain his trademark bold enunciation, with only occasional sparks of emotive delivery.

These bands' sound eventually becomes known as the classic "D.C. sound." Some of it is derisively labeled "emo," as shorthand for "emotional." One account has this term first appearing in a Flipside interview with Ian MacKaye. Shortly thereafter DC bands aquire the tag "emo-core."

Slightly later (1986), some bands begin to focus on the "emo" element itself. The Hated in Annapolis (near D.C.) seem to be the first post-Rites of Spring to do this. Shortly thereafter, Moss Icon appears in in the same town. Moss Icon strips the "emo" element down to the core, and adds a great deal of intricate, arpeggiated guitar melody (by Tonie Joy, later of Born Against, Lava, Universal Order of Armageddon, etc.) with a strong focus on loud/soft dynamics. The vocals, too, break new ground by building up to actual top-of-the-lungs screaming at songs' climaxes.

Moss Icon, as a relatively well-known band that toured some, introduces the punk scene to music that has core emphasis on emotion instead of punk energy. As such, I consider them the starting point for the emo movement, not Rites of Spring as is more commonly asserted. Later emo bands draw heavily from the Moss Icon dynamics, guitar style, and vocal delivery.
emo bands: rites of spring, portraits of the past, mineral,
american football ect.

not emo bands: My chemical romance, bullet for my valentine, the used. ect.

by thirteen April 27, 2006
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A group of emos who write and sing about love, not your pop 'love', but real love, break ups, depression. All the stuff everyone encounters in their life at one point.
A few people i know are in emo bands. They love the music and keeping the lyrics real. They sing about their experiences so others can relate. Also to rock out to!
by nina-lily July 30, 2005
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A group of people who perform 'emo' music.

see: emo
bands that are emo:

Taking Back Sunday
My Chemical Romance

bands that are NOT emo:

Simple Plan
Good Charlotte

SP and GC are pop-punk.
by meatwad's ghost May 24, 2005
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a band that play emotive hard core music with rawkus vocals and fairly complex melodies. Slower tempos than most hard core music, its considered 'softer' but trust me, its not really. Generally in thes tyle of bands like CTTS or city of catterpiller.

There are also newer emo bands, such as Hawthorne Heights, who play accoustic peices with soft 'whiny' vocals. This is Emotional Core Bands. and the newest stage of 'emo'
Most people think that Dashboard Confessional is an emo band, and it is, but not in the original sense of the word. Bands like 'Dear Diary I seem to be dead' and 'I Would set myself on fire for you' or possibly even 'funeral' diner' are aslo 'emo' but in the old sense of the word. MCR are a band that is much closer to the original sense of 'emo' except they have made it so more people like it.....

Ookay, Ill stop now
by Frank the Bunni August 5, 2006
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Pronoun, Eme-Oh-Band:The plural tense of Emo; effectively identical to the word "Emos." The emos that are not entirely shunned by every other natural life form on God's Green Earth will automatically congregate into these gatherings. It is a natural instinct, and thus far not one emo that is capable of basic human interaction has been proven to exist outside of a band. Scientists have determined that even in the case of the elimination of one or more sensory organs, an emo is still fully capable of seeking out and finding a band. After much debate and the deft amputation of perhaps more emo eyes and fingers than is truly necessary, science has begun to unravel why. The currently accepted explanation to this odd natural phenomena is that the minds of emos think and work as a collective, much in the same way as bees or ants. The social structure of an emo band is staggeringly close to that of a beehive or anthill, which not only contributes to the hivemind theory, but also to the widely held belief that emos are not mammals at all, but instead very large, color-challenged insects. This would explain why it is socially acceptable to abuse emos, as insects are excempt from the majority animal cruelty laws.

A few crucial differences *must* be ascertained between the emo band and the hives of other insects, though, to fully understand the concept:

WORK HABITS OF THE EMO BAND: Ants and Bees work constantly, only stopping, literally, to die; emos are utterly incapable of work, and tests carefully constructed to allow emos the capability have failed utterly because, apparently, emos are also utterly UNWILLING to work.

SOCIAL STRUCTURE OF AN EMO BAND: Ants' and Bees' social structures revolve around their Queen. Not only do emos find the concept of political authority alien and detestable, but anyone who even looks at an emo will know that their entire social structure revolves around their social structure. If the heirarchies within other common humanoid animals, such as chimpanzees, gibbons, residents of Los Angeles, or gorillas, are examined, a graph would resemble nothing so much as a pyramid topped by the most charismatic or wealthy. The social structure of an emo band is built more like one giant self-cutting doughnut.

EMO BAND RELIGION (GENERAL): Emo bands technically can exist within human religious structures, but rarely do. Emo bands have a religion erratic enough to match the convoluted social doughnut that defines them. Research has not confirmed whether emo religion reveres or simply BELIEVES in the divine, as not only would revering the devine mean that the creature would have one less subject to bitch about; it would also require that it recognize something more important than itself.

COMMON EMO BAND RELIGIONS: Note that all common religions that emo bands operate in bear closer resemblance to a cult than to a human religion; this is assumed for all of the following.

Defyparentus- An emo following this ideology takes to worshipping anything that acts directly contrary to the parents that unwittingly spawned it. This leads to the creature being grounded, which in turn leads to either the slow and painful process of mutating into a human, or to the immediate rejection of Defyparentus and conversion to Frantikforatenshunism.

Consumerschism-A very common belief compared to the other religions. This involves buying as much emo gear for the band as is within the boundaries of the parent's credit card. The band will then engage in a prayer, which is typically a song about fighting the evil corporations that just ripped them off 300+ Washingtons. Typical Sects of Consumerschism revolve around the makers of black clothing, hair dye, painkillers, and the C'thulhu like archdemon that secretly wears Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance, and Panic! at the Disco like pasty, talentless finger puppets.

Franticforattentionism- A confounding religion that does not actively recruit, but instead just garners worshippers of its own accord. The entire dedication of this religion is to the act of self-mutilation. Unlike the Medieval Flaggelants of Christianity, this is not done so much to repent in the eyes of some higher being as to become the center of focus of as many beings, higher or lower, as possible. If attempts fail, the emo's fragile brain (it is unknown whether this figure of speech is acceptable, as the emo brain is nothing so much as a small preprogrammed response organ, actually located somewhere along where a human's spine, another thing that emos do not have, would be) will snap, and it will commit suicide in an act of desperation, incapable that the feeling of importance is unattainable when one has slit one's jugular and/or wrist. Exterminators that specialize in the removal of emo band hives (informally known as garages) consider this religion a godsend as it saves them the cost of railgun ammo.

Inconvenientredstain- A radical sect of Franticforattentionism that resembles Consumerschism in that it makes a corporation, in this case the packagers of razor blades, ludicrously wealthy. In this case, exterminators still are spared expense, but any stainable surfaces within ten feet of a worshipper are constantly at risk of irreversibly turning red.

Ohemgeevagina!- This religion is never spelled without an exclamation point. Its church echoes the emo band structure by forming a massive doughnut of despair. This time, however, the center of the doughnut is filled by a half-decent-looking human girl who wanted to try the emo lifestyle, just for a bit. Human girls need to be warned of the risks; Emo bands may be weak as individuals, but when their hivemind is fully operational, she will be trapped in an ever-closing circle of poor, pathetic emos whose lives now revolve around her because maybe, just maybe, an emo could get lucky (note that because of the hivemind, the entire band will still be appeased at the loss of one of its thrall's virginity). The girl will have to put up with feigning apathy whilst hiding the fact that she intends to escape from her inhuman captors. The most successful method of escape is simply mating with one of the emos; this already-repugnant method is TEMPORARY, though, and will likely result in the chosen emo following her around like a pet, telling her everything that she does not want to know about him/it except for the selectively ommited fact that he/it masturbates regularly to her picture. Should she show any sign of fading interest in her pet, it will instantly become a Franticforattentionist until she either pays attention to it or it dies. An informed young woman should know that there is nothing wrong with the last one, no matter how much more sad the other emos will get. They may bitch, but the effect of a suicide within the emo band may invariably effect the hivemind and, if she's lucky, make sure that the emo band is never going to bother her or anyone else again.
The second solution is considerably more fun than the first, as not only does it not require sex with a member of the band, but it is also easy and satisfying. In effect, the goal is to get as medieval-looking an instrument as possible (the most effective choice is something following the basic structure of a warmace, but an improvised axe or halberd also functions nicely) and proceed to answer anything so sexual as an innuendo with a strategically calculated blow the sickeningly pale jawline. This process is to be repeated until escape from the band. If preferrable, the woman need not stop killing the emos the moment escape is possible

EMO PURPOSE: This section is disproportionately brief, as no effective use has yet been found for an emo band. If anything, their lack of a place in the ecosystem presents a harder argument to advocates of Darwin's theory.

DEFENITION 2: An increasingly common type of harmful pollution produced as a byproduct of the music industry. This pollution is fatal to humans but emo bands of the 1st defenition's variety possess a natural immunity.
Def 1:
Jim: God dammit, Fred, I've tried everything but this emo band just keeps hovering around my garbage.
Fred: These things happens...emo bands pop up in my garden so often that I have the exterminator on SPEED DIAL!

Def 2:
Fucking hell! An emo band is blowing this way! Get the gasmasks, NOW!
by "Leonardo" Allman February 4, 2007
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A band, commonly made by a record company, that plays a combination between pop and rock'n'roll. Most of these emo bands don't play their instruments. They hire musicians to play on their CD for them. They don't write their own music and are the most popular form of music today. Their music lacks guitar solos, intricate riffs, drum fills and solos, and complex bass lines, showing no signs of talent whatsoever.
"Waaah waaah my girlfriend broke my heart!" Says the shitty emo band singer of Fall Out Boy.
by awesomemans February 10, 2008
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A group of pussies... Oh yeah, they write music too.
look at that emo band, your balls must be awefully small to fit in pants that tight.
by moses x August 6, 2006
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