My favorite music genre of all time is alternative rock and has been since I was a kid. Why? It's the most all-encompassing modern music genre there is today.
Within alternative rock is pop rock, punk rock, soft rock - there is something for every rock lover out there, and something for those who don't love rock.
It started in the late eighties and early nineties, coming into popularity with Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit." There were bands before that emerging, of course - bands such as Smashing Pumpkins and REM. The point of alternative rock was to be different; these musicians wanted to break off from their childhood of classic rock and create the sound that was completely new and unheard of. And they succeeded, almost everyone, but in the early days of the genre, the songs still held the echoes of their musicians' classic rock childhood. However, as the genre grew and new bands took the stage, it slowly grew more and more diverse, until it was arguably its own unique sound and category.
These days, alternative rock is still distinguished by the diversity of sound. My personal favorite modern alternative rock bands are Mayday Parade, Emarosa, Fall Out Boy, and The Maine. These bands in and among themselves represent different aspects of alternative rock and all had their starts in not-so-similar places. Each album from each of these bands and numerous others within the genre is unique. The sound is recognizable to them, but never quite the same as the last, which makes waiting for the next album so exciting.
But the best part about this music? It is guaranteed to make you feel something with every song you hear. Sometimes the music is angry, or sad, or joyful, or a million other things that cannot possibly be named. The words may mean nothing special, but somewhere in your soul, the music resonates every time. It is special in that way; the lyrics can just be something to sing along to while your body thrums with emotion.
Even as a child, listening to Blink 182 and not understanding the words, I still felt the sorrow or the I-don't-care attitude their music provoked. It's an incredibly amazing thing, to be able to listen to music and not just hear it, but feel it too.