Radiohead is an English rock band from Abingdon, Oxfordshire, formed in 1985. They are one of the greatest bands of all time, and their music has had a massive influence on several bands for over two decades. Though typically classified as alternative rock, their sound is difficult to define.
Here are ten bands that sound like Radiohead.
1. Atoms for Peace
Thom Yorke, Radiohead’s frontman, formed Atoms for Peace in 2009 as a side project. The band features drummer Joey Waronker, Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich, and Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea. They released their debut album, Amok, in 2013. The music is heavily influenced by electronica and experimental music, which gives it a very Radiohead-like sound.
Muse is an English rock band formed in 1994. They have released eight studio albums, the first released in 1995. Many Radiohead fans consider Muse to be the closest band to Radiohead in terms of sound and style.
The lead singer, Matt Bellamy, has a very similar voice to Radiohead’s Thom Yorke. Songs like “Muscle Museum,” “Sunburn,” and “Sober” off their “Showbiz” album resemble Radiohead’s sound. Also, they attempt to emulate Radiohead’s rock ballad style.
Coldplay is a British alternative rock band formed in 1996. They have achieved global success, selling over 100 million records. Their sound has been compared to Radiohead’s due to their alternative rock sound and use of guitar riffs.
Chirs Martin has often said that Radiohead is one of his favorite bands and that they have been a significant influence on him. Coldplay’s single “Shiver” imitates Radiohead’s music style.
4. Arcade Fire
Arcade Fire is a Canadian indie rock band that formed in 2001. They have released five studio albums and are known for their eclectic mix of genres. They use synthesizers and keyboards in a style that is comparable to Radiohead’s sound. The band also revealed that Radiohead was an early inspiration.
Nirvana is an American grunge band formed in 1987. They are considered one of the most influential bands of all time and have sold over 75 million records.
The band laid the foundation for the grunge movement, and both bands have some similarities in their style of music. For example, Radiohead’s song “Just,” released in 1995, sounds like “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” released by Nirvana in 1991.
6. Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd is an English progressive rock band that was formed in 1964. They are considered one of the most successful and influential bands of all time.
Radiohead has cited them as an influence, and their dark, psychedelic sound similar to Radiohead’s “The Bends” era. Also, the “Dark Side of the Moon” album by Pink Floyd and Radiohead’s “Ok Computer” album is often compared.
7. The Smashing Pumpkins
The Smashing Pumpkins are an American alternative rock band formed in 1988. They have released six studio albums, the first released in 1991. Radiohead and The Smashing Pumpkins were two popular bands in the 1990s and experimented with alternative sounds. Both were identified as grunge bands, though Radiohead’s sound is more mellow and introspective.
U2 is an Irish rock band that was formed in 1976. They are one of the most successful bands of all time, having sold over 150 million records. U2’s sound is often compared to Radiohead due to its alternative rock sound and use of musical instruments that produce an electronic sound.
Oasis is an English rock band formed in 1991. They are one of the most successful and influential bands of all time. Oasis emerged at the same time as Radiohead and pioneered the Britpop movement. Oasis’ sound is often compared to Radiohead’s.
10. Bon Iver
Bon Iver is a folk band that was formed in 2006. They have released four studio albums. The band includes some psychedelic elements to their songs, and though they don’t use alternative song styles, they have other sounds quite similar to Radiohead’s.
Radiohead is a hugely influential band, with their unique sound and approach to songwriting having a massive impact on modern music. Many groups have drawn inspiration from Radiohead and created strikingly similar music, which is why they are considered one of the most influential groups ever to have come out of Britain. If you’re interested in Radiohead-like bands or sounds, check out those on our list!
Radiohead Featured Image by: David Urrea, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons
Atoms for Peace Image by: Ipaulosmar, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Muse Image by: Raph_PH, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Coldplay Image by: Raph_PH, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Arcade Fire Image by: leonardo samrani from rosario, argentina, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Nirvana Image by: Julie Kramer, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Pink Floyd Image by: Dave Bushe – https://www.flickr.com/people/davebushe/, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
The Smashing Pumpkins Image by: Gyang333, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
U2 Image by: Remy, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Oasis Image by: Will Fresch, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Bon Iver Image by: danieljordahl from Östersund, Sweden, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons