Red House Painters are a {{Slowcore}} band from the '90s consisting of singer-songwriter Mark Kozelek, drummer Anthony Koutsos, guitarist Jerry Vessel, and bassists Gorden Mack (198895) and Phil Carney (19952001).

They origins of Red House Painters are a bit of a messy story. Kozelek started an attempt at a music career in the mid-80s after years of depression and shyness. Living in Atlanta, he started a band called God Forbid that left virtually no footprint. Allegedly, recordings were made of God Forbid, but they have yet to surface. It's theorized that Kozelek formed the Painters in 1988, seeing as an early interview from that year at an Atlanta based indie station surfaced in 2011. The performance quality on these demos are shaky, it seems Kozelek has kept the early history of a band a secret due to OldShame. The demos from this era of the band remain lost. Their success in Atlanta was very limited.

In 1989, Kozelek reformed the group and moved to California in hopes of better chances. A strong of demos were recorded between 1989 and 1991. These demos are now sought-out collector's items by fans of the band. In 1992, the demos caught the ear of one Ivo Watts Russell, head of Creator/FourADRecords. For their first album, ''Down Colorful Hill'', they opted to remaster material from the demos. The album got critical acclaim, but didn't sell very well.

After the release of the first album, they became the new shining beacons of the 4AD label along with the AmericanMusicClub. The next year would be spent in exhausting touring and recording for the band, resulting in two [[SelfTitledAlbum Self Titled Albums]] (and yes, they WERE in fact trying to mess with their fanbase). These albums would later be renamed to ''Rollercoaster'' and ''Bridge'' based off of their artwork. Both of these albums are considered to be the epitome of the sadcore movement.

Then, after being pressured into creating a "pop album", the band recorded their 1995 album ''Ocean Beach''. Once again given critical acclaim, but faced with commercial failure. The more folk-oriented sound did not set well with some fans.

After ''Ocean Beach'', 4AD notoriously dropped the band after a waning relationship. The band would later join Creator/IslandRecords and promptly go on hiatus while Kozelek started recording a solo album. ''Music/SongsForABlueGuitar'' was released in 1996 to rave reviews. Though the album was a Kozelek solo album, it was given the RHP moniker in hopes of having it sell better.

After the success of ''Songs for a Blue Guitar'' the band got back together to record what would be their last album, ''Old Ramon''. Just as they were looking forward to having it released in 1997, Island dropped them and then proceeded to refuse to release the album. It would take Kozelek another 4 years to finally raise enough money to buy the rights back from Island and release the album on Creator/SubPop in 2001. By this time the band had already moved onto new horizons and RHP was no more. Kozelek went on to create Music/SunKilMoon, while other members went onto solo projects.

Known for their string of critically acclaimed albums and Kozelek's brilliant yet depressing lyrics, Red House Painters are one of the quintessential bands of the 1990s.

!!Red House Painters incorporate the following tropes:
* BittersweetEnding: The final song of ''Rollercoaster'', "Brown Eyes". The entire album is about Mark's stressful life and situations. The song is almost like a lullaby he's singing to his former self, as if to put it to rest.
* CarefulWithThatAxe- Kozelek indulges in this during the ending of the song "Blindfold"
* ConceptAlbum: ''Songs for a Blue Guitar'' seems like a pretty strong example. The songs are mostly about the pains of growing up and then watching yourself age.
* CoverAlbum: Mark's AC/DC album, ''What's Next to the Moon''.
* CoverVersion: On ''Songs for a Blue Guitar'', we have "Silly Love Songs" by Music/PaulMcCartney, "Long Distance Runaround" by Music/{{Yes}}, and "All Mixed Up" by Music/TheCars. The ''Bridge'' album gives us "I Am a Rock" by Music/SimonAndGarfunkel, and a version of the "Star Spangled Banner". There's also an entire Mark Kozelek album dedicated to AC/DC covers.
* CrazyCatLady: Mark owns a lot of cats and often writes songs about them..
* DeadpanSnarker: Mark comes across as one in his live shows.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: Shockingly enough, some of the songs on the early demos sound [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTFx94ErQ_k much]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWvO8RpHWBI more]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egbBXK-Qvzc upbeat]], and have a more distinctive [[Music/TheSmiths Smiths]] influence than their later, more somber work. Compare the [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23dqL7jXp04 demo version of "Strawberry Hill"]] to the [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxyKqH2E4sM studio version]] for a good example.
** Rewind the dial even farther to 1988 and you'll hear [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAYjp0kicRc the shakiness in Kozelek's voice]] as well as a very odd sound that they tackled at first. Before this, Kozelek was part of a band called "God Forbid"; supposedly they were punk.
* EpicRocking- Most of their music in general has songs the stretch beyond 7 minutes. At least one song per album is over 10 minutes long.
** It's more difficult finding songs in their discography that don't exceed the 4 minute mark.
* GrowingUpSucks: Basically the entire concept behind "24".
* HiddenTrack: ''Ocean Beach'' has one at the very end in the form of "Brockwell Park Pt 2"
* IAmTheBand: Mark Kozelek on ''Music/SongsForABlueGuitar''
* InNameOnly: Once again, ''Songs for a Blue Guitar''. It was meant to be Kozelek's solo debut.
* LeaveTheCameraRunning: On the track "Over My Head" on ''Ocean Beach'' there's a few seconds of the band just talking in the recording studio before the songs starts and after the song ends.
* LighterAndSofter: ''Ocean Beach'' is considerably more upbeat than the preceding albums
** It could be argued that every album after ''Rollercoaster'' and ''Bridge'' headed towards this direction. This culminated with the release of ''Old Ramon'', which is one of the most upbeat albums that Kozelek has ever recorded. Mind you, the band still [[TearJerker maintained their tendency to drive listeners to tears]]
* LyricalDissonance: "Lord Kill the Pain" is one of the most upbeat sounding songs in the band's entire catalog. The [[http://www.songmeanings.net/songs/view/45076/ lyrics on the other hand]], aren't ''nearly'' as sunny.
* MeanCharacterNiceActor: Kozelek seems to like playing the role of a snobby Jerkass on stage, but many people who have interviewed him and his closest friends all claim that he is one of the nicest guys out there. A possible explanation for the Jerkass behavior on stage is so that way he doesn't get obsessively stalky fans.
* MindScrew: "Evil" definitely qualifies. Unlike most of Kozelek's songs, which are usually related to his past or inner turmoil, the subject matter in this story is very vague, and as a result, the song becomes [[NightmareFuel incredibly creepy]].
** "Red Carpet" is also one to a lesser extent. It's very brief, and it's not fully clear who the song is addressed too.
* NewSoundAlbum: ''Ocean Beach''
** ''Songs for a Blue Guitar'' qualifies as well. It takes the folk influence of ''Ocean Beach'' a step further and lays the template for the work Kozelek would later do with Sun Kil Moon.
* PerishingAltRockVoice: Probably the absolute, most perished example in the history of music.
* PostRock- Arguable, but with the droney nature some of the longer songs take, especially on ''Down Colorful Hill'' and ''Rollercoaster'', as well as the band's odd use of time signatures and harmonies, they could qualify as this.
* RhymingWithItself: "That's when friends were nice, To think of them just makes you feel nice" from "Have You Forgotten".
* {{Scatting}}: The final section of "Katy Song".
* SelfTitledAlbum: One of the rare bands to have TWO released in the same year.
* SpiritualSuccessor: Sun Kil Moon to the point where comparisons have become nigh impossible.
* StudioChatter: "Over My Head"
* TextlessAlbumCover: ''Ocean Beach'' and ''Old Ramon''
* TropeCodifier: For sadcore.
* VocalEvolution: Starting with ''Songs for a Blue Guitar'', Kozelek's voice went from being very strained and somber to higher pitched with more of a distinct Music/NeilYoung influence.