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Math Rock
Math rock is a subgenre of alternative rock that first materialized in the early 90s, characterized by unusual time signatures, atypical rhythms (stopping and starting are common), angular melodies, and dissonance. The genre is influenced by prog rock, hardcore, jazz, and experimental composers such as Steve Reich and John Cage. It usually only features guitar, bass, and drums, with vocals not being a priority.

The genre started in several different places - Chicago had Bastro and Shellac (a Steve Albini project), for example, while Pittsburgh sported Don Caballero, San Diego had Antioch Arrow and Drive Like Jehu, and Washington DC offered Shudder to Think and Jawbox. Other places had groups as well, such as Chapel Hill, North Carolina's Polvo and Louisville featured math rock/post-rock legends Slint, who released the classic album Spiderland in 1991. New York also sported math rock pioneers Chavez.

Math rock is closely related to post-rock, but starting around the mid-90s and especially prevalent come the new millennium, the two genres diverged; math rock is often more punk-influenced and disjointed, whereas post-rock leans more towards fluid soundscapes.

The genre is still alive today, with bands such as Hella, Tera Melos, Giraffes? Giraffes!, Lite, Knot Feeder, Sleeping People, June of 44, Rodan, The For Carnation, and probably a million other bands offering new music.


Bands that are generally considered to be math rock include:

Jangle PopAlternative RockNoise Rock
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