Indie, indie... what an exquisite word! These days so many bands call themselves "indie rock" even if they sound nothing like indie rock (before we ranked this category we had to filter out all the songwriters and straight rock bands who tried to re-brand themselves as "indie" - WE CAUGHT YOU!). Of course, the word originates from "independent" - not "Indian" like your clueless friends often assume - but it's been used since the 80's to describe "non-mainstream" rock music (and record labels). Think tense and/or dark and/or experimental-ish mostly guitar based rock. Needless to say, in the late aughts Indie became huge, and many NYC bands (paradoxically signed to majors) like Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Interpol had a crucial role in bringing this genre to the masses.
Total submissions in this category: 45
Artists Qualified to the Poll's Next Stage (starting around 01.10):
Honorable Mentions (above 7 out of 10):
Jurors: Gracie Gutman (Deli SF), Jason Behrends (Deli Chicago), Lucy Sherman (Deli Seattle)
The Deli's Staff