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Top Emo Records: classics meet under the radar gems in a new list from TOURNEFORTE

3 mins read

Myrtle Beach’s TOURNEFORTE invites you to delve into the depths of timeless emo greatness with their list of Emo Classics for the Ages, enriched by the addition of a few noteworthy releases from the past year.

As they prepare to release their debut full-length album, “Notes From a Lost Dog,” on February 16th through Acrobat Unstable Records, TOURNEFORTE introduces their latest single, “Wilmer.” This track, along with a quartet of other singles (1, 2, 4, and 7 on the album), showcases TOURNEFORTE’s songwriting prowess while paying homage to their Southern roots, characterized by soulful steel guitar and a touch of country twang.

However, what truly sets TOURNEFORTE’s list apart is its exploration of enduring classics that have left an indelible mark on the emo and indie genres. These albums stand the test of time, continuing to inspire and resonate with musicians and fans alike. TOURNEFORTE recognizes these records as pillars of their artistic journey, offering insight into their influences and the sounds that have shaped their musical identity.


Top Indie / Emo Records worth a good listen, by TOURNEFORTE:


At The Moonbase – Slaughter Beach, Dog

When this record came out, I spent 4 hours listening to it on repeat after work. It’s one of my favorite SBD records. The perfect display of love, life, and vulnerability in relationships.

Figure – Into It. Over It.

This record has been a staple for me as a musician & a fan of the band since the day it came out. IIOI will always be the main inspiration sonically/ lyrically for our band, and this record broke new ground for me trying to process my own experiences more introspectively.

Literally Main Street – Cataldo

During lockdown, I spent time delivering for a grocery delivery service and would always listen to NPR. ‘Ding Dong Scrambled Eggs’ played on World Cafe one night and I’ve been completely absorbed by the world of that record ever since. It’s so effortlessly engaging, and it helped me look at our songs as more of a narrative than just a display of emotions.

Happy Birthday, Ratboy – Ratboys

This record came from the Stormchasers Patreon monthly vinyl subscription and spun on my record every night for months when I was cooking dinner. It introduced me to the more casual chiller side of the current emo scene and I’ve been obsessed since.

The Monitor – Titus Andronicus

When going into record this record, the songs were mostly acoustic and hardly fully fleshed out for a full band setting. Listening to The Monitor on the way to New Jersey, we were floored by the rawness and earthiness it had. It was scrappy and it felt like listening to someone pour their whole life story out and run it through a cheese grater. It’s a great record and gave us some motivation to not polish ourselves too much.

Self titled – Stillhungry

Knowing we were going to record with our friend Matteo Debenedetti (guitar/vocals in Stillhungry), we spent a lot of time in preparation listening to his previous projects. Truthfully, every record we’ve made up until this point has been an attempt to recreate anything like what his bands make and this was no exception.

Holy Ghost – Modern Baseball

Okay so here we go being a current emo band talking about one of the biggest emo bands in our history of ‘Midwest Emo’/Emo Adjacent music. This record has the perfect blend of radio pop structures and classic emo. It’s one I revisit regularly to stay inspired. Songs like ‘Hiding’ and ‘Mass’ tell stories I’ve only ever dreamt of writing, and hopefully some of that penmenship rubbed off on us.

Reconstruction Site – The Weakerthans

What else can be said about a record like this? Every emo band from the south that I’ve ever met sites this as foundational for their sound/general inspiration. The title track still haunts me because I know I’ll never write a tune that witty and groovy.

The yunahon mixtape – Oso Oso

Oso Oso has many great records, but this one played a lot during the writing process of LP2. It’s got this air of “cool” that I wish try to capture when writing for Tourneforte.

I Won’t Reach Out To You – Hot Mulligan

Here we are again, being the emo band referencing the biggest emo band in our world. This record means a lot to me because it came at a time when I needed it most. The flow of those 5 songs really helped me shape the flow of the track-list on LP2.

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