Weekly survey: What’s your pick for the alt-rock artist of the decade?

I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that in two weeks it’ll be 2020. That sounds to just way too far in the future for it to be the present. Weren’t we supposed to to have a colony on Mars by now? Where is my flying car? Shouldn’t we all be getting around via personal jet packs?

But let’s cast our glance backward a few more times, specifically on the music of the 2010s in the form of this question: Who is your alt-rock artist of the decade?

You can look at this this in a couple of ways, I supposed. The first method is to use mathematical criteria like album sales/streams, concert tickets sold, chart position, and so on. The second is more personal: Which artist made the greatest impact on you as a person and a music fan over the last ten years?

This does NOT mean the artist has to have emerged since 2010. If, say, you discovered the genius of an older act (Beatles, Pearl Jam, Coldplay) that changed your life, that can count, too.

No wrong answers here. Looking forward to your input.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

19 thoughts on “Weekly survey: What’s your pick for the alt-rock artist of the decade?

  • December 16, 2019 at 10:36 am
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    Devin Townsend. He’s so alternative that even the altiest stations don’t utter his name. Although performing for the greater part of 30yrs, I’ve only been listening to him for just over a year. I never knew of him, as he never gets played. I was floored as to how talented he is. What a vocal range. Now he’s on my list of faves, second only to Tool. Give him some love. At very least, play some of his stuff every now & then…it won’t kill ya.

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  • December 16, 2019 at 11:05 am
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    The Foo Fighters. Honourable mention to The Gaslight Anthem.

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  • December 16, 2019 at 11:11 am
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    Arcade Fire. Although they began their domination of Alt Rock in the 2000s, they sealed the deal in the 2010s with the 3 game changing albums that have helped redefine the sound of Alt Rock that seems to mirror or “reflekt” our weird times. Keep up the great work Alan, long time listener of your show. Jonathan

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  • December 16, 2019 at 12:14 pm
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    July Talk

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  • December 16, 2019 at 12:15 pm
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    July Talk and Twenty One Pilots for me.

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  • December 16, 2019 at 1:33 pm
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    I’m going with Twenty One Pilots. I feel they have blown up, making catchy and original music with different sounds and are absolutely amazing showmen!!

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  • December 16, 2019 at 2:12 pm
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    Coheed and Cambria, with Gaslight Anthem as a #2

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  • December 16, 2019 at 4:55 pm
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    Arctic Monkeys, The National, The Kills, Wolf Parade, QOTSA, so many more.

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  • December 16, 2019 at 5:03 pm
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    Fast Romantics, Dawes

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  • December 16, 2019 at 7:39 pm
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    Twenty One Pilots have certainly made their mark in the 2010’s.

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    • December 16, 2019 at 8:38 pm
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      Discovered LCD Soundsystem, Foals, and Spoon. Life is so much better.

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  • December 16, 2019 at 8:53 pm
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    Two 2010-2019 groups that have changed what I hear in, and how I listen to, music: Deafheaven and The Body.

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  • December 17, 2019 at 11:39 am
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    I think the most influential artist of the decade has to be Josh Homme for work in and out of QOTSA, he’s at the forefront of alt-rock along with Dave Grohl IMHO. Metric, Said the Whale, Cage the Elephant, Elle King, and Muse were some of my favorite acts of the decade.

    Acts like The Beaches and Billie Eilish will be ones to watch for next decade.

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  • December 18, 2019 at 2:15 pm
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    IDLES. Hard and aggressive music, rooted in punk with a message of empathy.

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  • December 20, 2019 at 9:15 pm
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    Hollywood Undead, Red, Skillet, The Veer Union … to name a few. Thanks for everything you do Alan!

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  • January 21, 2020 at 12:57 pm
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    Mumford and Sons – Best was early decade but live shows make up for the latest album.

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