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100 Fantastic Indie Rock DEEP CUTS Post 2000

Updated: Dec 13, 2023

Dandy Warhols - 100 Fantastic Indie Rock Deep Cuts

(Pictured - The Dandy Warhols 2014 Oxford, UK)

Some of the finest music ever released has come from an explosion of indie and alternative rock in the 90s dramatically increasing in popularity by the 2000's. With all of the attention that has been given to the indie rock hits of the century, we wanted to dive into the deep cuts of indie artists and create a playlist celebrating indie rock's finest deep cuts. Similarly, to our other recently posted lists Top 100 Greatest Indie Rock Songs Post 2000 and Top 100 Greatest Indie Rock Albums of all time, for the purposes of this list we’ll stick a bit closer to the original definition of indie meaning songs released from independent labels. The songs included in this list are primarily non-singles and album tracks which receive little or no mainstream attention. There are a few singles on this list however they were all very under-the-radar. Artists who may have signed over to a major label but either spent a large portion of their career on an indie label or are primarily considered indie rock over any other genre have been included. Alongside that, artists who were signed to indie labels in one country, but major labels in another country may also be included if they are primarily aligned in the indie scene over anything else. Alternative rock bands who are generally not considered indie rock (Radiohead, Queens of the Stone Age, Coldplay, The Killers) have been excluded as well along with all pop-punk bands to keep the spirit focused around indie. Alongside indie rock, indie pop and indie folk have been included on a case-by-case basis, primarily focusing on tracks released from albums considered indie rock, or if the song has substantial rock undertones. For this list, we compiled what we found to be 100 of the greatest indie rock deep cuts, and of those 100, selectively featured 10 stellar tracks. With the grandeur of these songs being minimal as they are deep cuts, generally unheard by most listeners, we decided not to rank them in any specific order.

Track number six on Belle & Sebastian's seventh studio album found itself as perhaps the most danceable and grooviest track the ensemble of Scottish misfits ever released. A fan favorite for many Belle & Sebastian fans and an incredibly infectious song to be played live, Sukie in the Graveyard features some of the groups most creative lyrics and undeniably their finest bassline. The track was never released as a single and seldom received much airplay on AAA radio but nevertheless, Sukie in the Graveyard is a must-save for any indie rock playlist and a song that ought to find itself on repeat.

One of the least streamed songs on the smashingly influential debut album by The Libertines, The Boy Looked at Johnny showcases early 2000's anti brit-pop mentality, angsty indie rock as good as any other song from the era. The guitar work by heartily entwined bandmembers, Pete Doherty and Carl Barât is top-tier early 2000's post-punk revival gold, pairing well with the in-your-face punchy lyrics. Match that with an unexpected, yet an immensely catchy, burlesque-themed chorus and this track was one for the ages. Chelsea Dagger anyone? I think I know where The Fratelli's may have found some ideas.

Fancy Claps - Wolf Parade

Many bands with songs on this list did not quite get the praise they deserved for the talent and innovativeness they possessed; Wolf Parade is case and point. Their debut album Apologies to the Queen Mary was the 62nd best indie rock album of all time by us with Fancy Claps sticking out as noteworthy deep cut. Perfectly paired keyboard and guitar work by Dan Boeckner and Spencer Krug create an aura of powerful, room-filling instrumentation atop abrupt unique vocals. Fancy Claps is among the finest songs ever released by the creative might of Wolf Parade and perhaps did not quite receive the respect it deserved.

Nietzche - The Dandy Warhols

Slow tempo, heavily distorted guitars and sludgy vocals created this behemoth of a track found on the third studio album by The Dandy Warhols. As repetitive as the song is, the sheer power of the band makes it equally memorable. Taking a Phil Spector-esque wall of sound, the dynamic might of Pixies and a page from the underground, stoner rock movement, the Dandies struck paydirt with Nietzche adding another color to the hugely diverse record that was Thirteen Tales from Urban Bohemia.

Black Math - The White Stripes

The second track on the critically acclaimed album Elephant by The White Stripes, behind the breakthrough song Seven Nation Army (which we ranked the sixth greatest indie rock song post 2000), Black Math features some of Jack Whites most interesting and momentous guitar playing. The layered, distorted guitar showcases the brilliance of Jack White and his knack for crafting clever and catchy guitar licks. Garage rock has a long and tenacious history, and The White Stripes played a huge part in its massive revival in the early 2000's with Black Math exhibiting the true spirit of DIY rock'n'roll.

The fifth song on what we would call, the best album by The Shins, Sea Legs is probably the most creative song The Shins ever put their name on. Featuring the lo-fi-esque instrumentation of their debut album, The Shins put high-level production quality atop lo-fi ideals on this memorable track. The spacey lyrics and slow tempo set an existential scene for the listener before the final two minutes start and the loop pedals go crazy. Although Sea Legs was released as a single in the UK, it never charted or got much attention outside of fans and friends of fans. Regardless, this a deep cut worth listening to off of one of the finest indie rock albums of all time.

The View - Modest Mouse

The tenth track from Modest Mouse's most commercially successful album, Good News for People Who Love Bad News, is yet another track on this record showcasing the benefits of jangly guitar playing. Sounding as if The Talking Heads, and The Smiths came together to make a song, this track is a great one, catchy, danceable and pleasantly vocally abrupt, in true Isaac Brock fashion. The greatness of Modest Mouse shines through well on this non-single album track.

Tallest Man in the Nightclub - The Reytons

Tallest Man in the Nightclub finds itself on a largely undiscovered EP by modern Arctic Monkey's reincarnation (well, if Arctic Monkey's stopped making music after their second album), The Reytons. Their debut EP was fantastic and fell under the radar for most of the indie world, yet the band has been growing in popularity over the years since which by all accounts, they exponentially deserve. From the strong debut, Tallest Man in the Nightclub is our favorite of the five solid songs with a catchy chorus, momentous descending guitar line and youthful, relatable lyrics.

The Body Says No - The New Pornographers

The eighth track from the massively praised debut album by Canadian Supergroup, The New Pornographers fills itself with nostalgic 80's power-pop chords alongside perfectly crafted vocal harmonies. An often-forgotten track on a record which although was critically lauded, never quite got the commercial praise and exposure it was entitled to, The Body Says No is a deep cut well worth giving a listen to and subsequently playing it on repeat again and again.

Junk Bond Trader - Elliot Smith

Towing the line between rock and folk in the late 90's and very early 2000's was singer-songwriter Elliot Smith. Released from his final studio album in 2000, three years before his tragic death was this deep cut. Showcasing Smith's gifted voice and skillful, flowing guitar was Junk Bond Trader. Capturing a folk-like twang, more akin to his earlier records was this under the radar track that has aged so gracefully.

Candy Kane - Caesars

Devil You Know - Pinback

Oh Stacey (Look What You've Done!) - The Zutons

Kamera - Wilco

Hypocrite - Cage the Elephant

Ring Pop - The Orwells

Classic Cars - Bright Eyes

Forever (Garage Version) - Mumford & Suns

You Wouldn't Like Me - Tegan & Sara

Sleep - The Dandy Warhols

You Should Learn - We Are Scientists

It Took a Minute - Generationals

Over & Out - Televisionaries

Get Closer - Life In Film

Burning - The War On Drugs

Oh, Goddamnit - Hot Hot Heat

Portuguese Knife Fight - Cage the Elephant

Darts of Pleasure - Franz Ferdinand

Breakin' the Law - The New Pornographers

Black Tounge - Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Jackie Wants a Black Eye - Dr. Dog

Sheep - Mt. Joy

Plan A - The Dandy Warhols

Up From Below - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros

Repair - Last Dinosaurs

Are You a Hypnotist?? - The Flaming Lips

traveler - Hippo Campus

Grounds For Divorce - Wolf Parade

Paper Thin Walls - Modest Mouse

In Our Prime - The Black Keys

They'll Soon Discover - The Shins

What You Want - Bombay Bicycle Club

Who Do You Think - Interpol

Go Outside - Viola Beach

Rich - Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Wires and Waves - Rilo Kiley

The Mall & Misery - Broken Bells

I Was a Kaleidoscope - Death Cab For Cutie

Violence - Parquet Courts

Transpose - Bad Suns

Platform 7 - Mt. Desolation

Don't Make Me a Target - Spoon

Rome - Yeasayer

The Plot - White Rabbits

Like Eating Glass - Bloc Party

Fix This - The Colourist

Not My Girl - Tokyo Police Club

KC Accidental - Broken Social Scene

Giraffe - Miniature Tigers

Charity - Courtney Barnett

Cigarettes in the Theatre - Two Door Cinema Club

Une Anne Sans Lumiere - Arcade Fire

The Gentry Cove - Dirty Pretty Things

Sea Lion Goth Blues - The Growlers

L.A. - Elliot Smith

Ghost - The Reytons

Small Stakes - Spoon

Work All Day - Portugal. The Man

Return - OK Go

Follow Through - Ripe

Forest & Sands - Camera Obscura

Funky Squaredance, Pt. 1/2/3 (Medley) - Phoenix

The Sporting Life - The Decemberists

More Adenturous - Rilo Kiley

Two Receivers - Klaxon

Miracle Drug - A.C. Newman

Next To You - The Revivalists

James Brown - Cage the Elephant

If You Were There, Beware - Arctic Monkeys

The Party's Crashing Us - Of Montreal

40 Mark Strasse - The Shins

Wicked Gil - Band of Horses

The Ocean - Young Rival

All in White - The Vaccines


2000's alternative & indie rock playlist cover 2.JPEG
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