Definition of emo in English:


(also emocore)


mass noun
  • 1A style of rock music resembling punk but having more complex arrangements and lyrics that deal with more emotional subjects.

    • ‘While the lyrics are kind of abstract and emotional the way emo is, this is a pure indie CD.’
    • ‘We weren't a bedroom pop outfit by any stretch; back then we played dour, emotionally apoplexed emocore.’
    • ‘Their music has been categorized as punk emo, and even pop.’
    • ‘I like emo and some pop punk bands.’
    • ‘They hold a rather unique style of music, they're not quite rock, punk, or emo.’
    • ‘So this is what happens when you mix goth and emo with a major-label budget?’
    • ‘Not wanting to wallow in the dead-end mud of emo, the boys have decided to evolve their sound.’
    • ‘In short, it's a record that forges its own new genre: emo for adults.’
    • ‘While Mock Orange have always been classified as emo, the group tends to leans more towards sunny indie-rock than tortured punk.’
    • ‘Emo isn't dead, it just needs more bands like this.’
    • ‘Leaving emo behind, The Only Children take the roots-rock and country-folk route, drenched in acoustic guitar and pedal steel.’
    • ‘In the States we attract a lot more kids just because we're the opposite of everything that the "cool" kids are doing like nu-metal and emo.’
    • ‘This is what emo wishes it was: mature and catchy without being whiny and anti-climactic.’
    • ‘Throughout their set of high-energy emo they thanked any audience member within a 20 foot radius for moving closer to the stage.’
    • ‘The quartet specializes in old-school emo.’
    • ‘Most of the bands we knew started playing emo, got the shaggy haircuts and started wearing tight t-shirts.’
    • ‘Half of the album is emo, the band have completely abandoned playing any jazz.’
    • ‘With all the attention that emo has been getting over the last few years, it's no surprise that more and more bands are popping out of the woodwork.’
    • ‘They were always a little too loud and clever to be emo.’
    • ‘There is a very wide variety of emo.’
    1. 1.1count noun An admirer of emo music or a member of the subculture associated with it.
      ‘I'm not one of those emos who are always crying—I just want to make that clear’
      • ‘Katy's boyfriend was there too, he was sort of an emo - but he was really awesome at skateboarding and stuff apparently.’
      • ‘Being an Emo, for instance, is a great way to avoid the hard questions of who are you and what have you done?’
      • ‘Amid the furore, little has been heard from the emos themselves.’
      • ‘He had always thought James was a closet case like a lot of emos.’
      • ‘I suspect that emos will be running the country in 20-30 years.’
      • ‘Introverted, unthreatening, wimpy and polite when approached, it isn't immediately obvious why emos have suddenly become national hate figures.’
      • ‘Many emos are intelligent, sociable, highly organised, and more than capable of making a concerted collective response.’
      • ‘In common with many emos, Sam wore alternative black or dark clothing and had long hair, which attracted the bullies.’
      • ‘Chicks dig the hipsters and the emos.’
      • ‘And like their counterparts in Mexico and Russia, Egyptian emos have more to worry about than just being mocked by their peers; they are now being actively targeted by the police.’
      • ‘The revelation that emos may have been responsible for the stencilled graffiti merely played in to an existing narrative of fear and distrust.’
      • ‘Strikingly apolitical and averse to the urgent rebelliousness of others, emos are happy to admit that they have no ideology beyond insisting on their right to do what they want.’
      • ‘Emos say the bashing incidents have increased and the habitual harassment intensified.’
      • ‘The Emos regard themselves as a cool, young sub-set of the Goths.’
      • ‘Emos also attract attention for self-harming.’
      • ‘The emos who hang out in Mexico City's Insurgentes Circle, distant relations of our own kohl-eyed musical mopes, face constant harassment from corrupt police and local punks.’
      • ‘The emos and the chavs (ironically, both factions are associated with hooded tops) are merely the latest social dichotomy to publicly clash.’
      • ‘Now there are emos in schools nationwide, alongside the plethora of more established tribes.’
      • ‘Discerning readers were offered tips for identifying emos: they were "driven by punk and emotion", wore "guyliner" and "manscarer" and were to be found "loitering in streets often dismal and in tears".’
      • ‘There's no need to be scared of a group of emos as they're more likely to harm themselves than you.’


  • Denoting or relating to emo and its associated subculture.

    ‘an emo band’
    ‘emo kids’
    • ‘Charlie is a bit of an emo kid - a bit emotional.’
    • ‘There's definitely kind of an emo edge to our music.’
    • ‘From what people tell me this album has more of an emo feel in some places.’
    • ‘Aww, geez, Greg - I don't wanna be in an emo band!’
    • ‘"We didn't set out to be an emo band," says the bassist.’
    • ‘I'm still an emo kid.’
    • ‘We played with an emo band at Listen, and it actually went over surprisingly well.’
    • ‘He has hair that hangs over his ears and looks like a combination of the Beatles and an emo kid.’
    • ‘I guess that's an emo thing?’
    • ‘I'm tempted to get an emo haircut, who dares me?’
    • ‘I really like my brother, but he's 14 and going through an emo stage and he just acts all the time like he hates me.’
    • ‘My husband would scornfully call me an emo girl trapped in the body of a grown woman.’
    • ‘They're a punk band not an emo band and they're very hard working.’
    • ‘The 25-year-old divorcee seems destined to be stuck as an emo teenager for the rest of her career.’
    • ‘The chorus here wouldn't sound out of place at all in an emo song.’
    • ‘The melodies and harmonies make it sound like it belongs on an emo record.’
    • ‘Blogging seems appropriate for an emo kid trapped in the body of a nu-metal lead singer, but what about a thuggish, ruggish street poet?’
    • ‘The teenager fell in love with the fictitious guitarist who portrayed himself as a member of the "emo" subculture.’
    • ‘The band's third full-length finds the quartet continuing to reach beyond the limits prescribed by their emo roots.’
    • ‘That emo crowd hates us but we don't care.’


1990s short for emotional hardcore.