The Best Rock and Indie Music of 2020

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


A list of the best rock and indie music of 2020. This year has seen a great resurgence in rock music, with a number of fantastic new bands and artists emerging.

The Best Rock Albums of 2020

Rock music has always been about pushing boundaries and expanding the possibilities of what music can be, and 2020 was no different. This year saw a wide range of new Rock music being released, from established artists like Kendrick Lamar, to newcomers like Phoebe Bridgers. Here are the best Rock albums of 2020.

Kendrick Lamar – DAMN.
DAMN. is Kendrick Lamar’s fourth studio album, and it is easily his best work to date. From the first track, “DNA”, it is clear that this is a different kind of Kendrick Lamar album. DAMN. is more focused and personal than his previous work, and it features some of the best production of any hip-hop album in recent memory. Standout tracks include “DNA”, “YAH.”, “ELEMENT.”, “LOYALTY.”, and “FEAR.”.

Phoebe Bridgers – Stranger in the Alps
Stranger in the Alps is the debut album from Phoebe Bridgers, and it is one of the most impressive debut albums in recent memory. Bridgers’ songwriting prowess is on full display on tracks like “Smoke Signals”, “Funeral”, and “Motion Sickness”. Stranger in the Alps is a sad and beautiful album that feels like a force of nature.

The National – Sleep Well Beast
Sleep Well Beast is The National’s seventh studio album, and it finds them at the top of their game. The album’s lead single, “The System Only Dreams in Total Darkness”, is one of The National’s best songs ever, and it set the tone for an album that is dark, moody, and absolutely breathtaking. Other standout tracks include “Walk It Back”, “Day I Die”, and “I’ll Still Destroy You”.

The Best Indie Albums of 2020

2020 was a banner year for indie music, with a wide variety of excellent releases across the genre. From daring debuts to stunning returns, there was no shortage of great music to choose from. Here are our picks for the best indie albums of 2020.

Arcade Fire – ‘Funeral’
One of the most influential indie bands of the past two decades, Arcade Fire returned this year with their long-awaited fifth album, ‘Everything Now.’ While it didn’t quite live up to the high expectations set by their previous work, it’s still a strong effort full of great songs. Among the highlights are the anthemic ‘Creature Comfort,’ the beautiful ‘put Your Money on Me,’ and the haunting title track.

The National – ‘Sleep Well Beast’
The National’s seventh album is another masterful example of their atmospheric brand of indie rock. Building on the success of their last record, ‘High Violet,’ ‘Sleep Well Beast’ finds the band perfecting their formula with a collection of dark, introspective songs. Standout tracks include ‘Day I Die,’ ‘Walk It Back,’ and the gorgeous album closer, ‘Dark Side of The Gym.’

Fleet Foxes – ‘Crack-Up’
Fleet Foxes made a triumphant return this year with their first album in six years, ‘Crack-Up.’ The band sounds as fresh as ever on this sprawling double album, which features some of their best songwriting to date. Highlights include the catchy lead single, ‘Third of May / Ōdaigahara,’ the gorgeous ballad ‘Fools Errand,’ and the epic ten-minute closer, ‘I Should See Memphis.’

Broken Social Scene – Hug Of Thunder’
Broken Social Scene made a welcome return this year with their first album in seven years, Hug Of Thunder. The Canadian collective sounded as good as ever on this excellent record, which featured some of their most catchy and accessible songs to date. Among the highlights are lead single ’Halfway Home,’ the rousing ’Protest Song,’ and the anthemic ’Stay Happy.’

The Best Rock Songs of 2020

It’s been a weird year for music, with the pandemic causing delays and disruptions for many artists. But that hasn’t stopped some great music from getting released. Here are our picks for the best rock and indie songs of 2020.

“Shameika” by Fiona Apple
“Good News” by Mac Miller
“Kcillings” by IDLES
“The New Abnormal” by The Strokes
“Runaway” by HAIM
“Bodies” by Miley Cyrus
” processors of the dead ” by Carpenter Brut

The Best Indie Songs of 2020

The best indie songs of 2020 offer a wide range of sounds and styles, from lo-fi bedroom pop to lush, grandiose ballads. These are the year’s standouts so far.

Lo-fi singer-songwriter Clairo released her highly anticipated debut album, Immunity, in early 2019. The album’s lead single, “Bags,” was an instant viral hit, racking up millions of streams on Spotify. Clairo cemented her status as an indie darling with follow-up singles “Sofia” and “Bicycle,” both of which were similarly successful.

Another artist who had a breakout year in 2019 was British singer-songwriter Lewis Capaldi. Capaldi’s emotive vocals and heart-wrenching lyrics struck a chord with listeners, and his debut single, “Someone You Loved,” quickly became a global smash hit. He followed up that success with the release of his lauded debut album, Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent, in May 2019.

American indie rock band Vampire Weekend made their long-awaited return in 2019 with the release of their fourth studio album, Father of the Bride. The album was met with critical acclaim, and its lead single, “Harmony Hall,” was hailed as one of the best songs of the year. Father of the Bride also spawned the hits “Sunflower” and “This Life,” both of which were nominated for Grammy Awards.

Other notable indie songs of 2020 include “Goodbye” by Sunflower Bean, “Lover” by Taylor Swift, “7 Rings” by Ariana Grande, and “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X.

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