The Top 5 Alt Rock Albums of 2019

Emo, indie and post-punk all had a big year.

5. The Maine: You Are OK

The most ambitious release thus far for the Arizona emo group, You Are OK is a loud, catchy and saccharine celebration of dealing with anxiety.

Listen to: “Slip the Noose,” “Heave, We’re Already Here,” “Flowers on the Grave”

4. The National: I Am Easy to Find {Review}

The National delivered yet another outstanding album in 2019. While the album may be their least accessible release to date, it’s also their most rewarding.

Listen to: “Quiet Light,” “Not in Kansas,” “Rylan”

3. PUP: Morbid Stuff {Review}

The best punk record of the decade. Period.

Listen to: “See You at Your Funeral,” “Bloody Mary, Kate and Ashley,” “Kids”

2. Fontaines D.C.: Dogrel {Review}

Post-punk was ruled by IDLES in 2018, but Fontaines D.C. ruled the genre in 2019. The Dublin outfit juggles up-tempo rockers (“Liberty Belle” and “Boys in the Better Land”) with more intimate, slow-paced songs (“Roy’s Tune” and “Dublin City Sky”) to amazing effect.

Listen to: “Roy’s Tune,” “Liberty Belle,” “Boys in the Better Land”

1. Somos: Prison on a Hill {Review}

Released shortly after the unfortunate passing of guitarist Phil Haggerty, Prison on a Hill is simultaneously cathartic and invigorating, and it deserves significantly more attention than it received this year.

Listen to: “My Way to You,” “Untraceable Past,” “Mediterranean”