The names you'll find here are musicians whose artistic ability - genius, in some cases - has dwarfed their limited commercial success. So don your white robes and join us as we count down the 20 gods of cult.

Meanwhile, head to NME.COM/video to hear NME writers discuss these artists - and don't forget to let us know your own personal cult heroes.

Television Personalities

The band who inspired MGMT's new album

From being asked by Kurt Cobain to support Nirvana, to The Futureheads' cover of 'A Picture Of Dorian Gray', to being the glue that bound the C86/Creation scene of the late '80s, Television Personalities have nonetheless never troubled the mainstream.

Here’s Andrew from MGMT on their genius: “We set up a couple of shows with them – they were...



J Dilla


The independent hip-hop hero

Like so many in the hip-hop scene, it took death for the work of James Dewitt Yancey, to be given the appropriate reverence.

Not by Jack Barnett from These New Puritans though: "My brother lent me a copy of 'Donuts' – two days before he died, weirdly.

"He was unique for his approach to rhythms, a kind of out-of-timeness. I admire his...


The man who invented digital hardcore

With Atari Teenage Riot, Alec Empire invented digital hardcore and reconnected techno with politics, while as the label boss of Digital Hardcore Recordings, he's been the leading light in the Berlin electronic avant-vanguard.

In his present infinity of solo guises, and with a May ATR reunion and new single confirmed, he still has no idea how to behave....


The patron saint of idealistic cynics

While others schemed it, he lived it.

While most moaned about the state of the charts and banality of record labels, he put the entire music industry over his lap and gave it a spanking – whether it was The KLF deleting their entire back-catalogue, costing themselves a fortune, or them toasting another fortune in the infamous...





DIY indie trailblazers

Despite being the first DIY-punk-pop-riot-grrrl-band-who-wrote-their-own-fanzines to appear on Top Of The Pops, this Glasgow trio were the subject of much derision.

Yet in recent years their cult has striven to right past wrongs; last month even saw their fans hold International Bis Day, with tribute bands playing in venues worldwide.


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