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Chicago noise rockers Shellac have been classified as post-hardcore and math rock, but describe themselves as a "minimalist rock trio."

They have a distinctive, minimalist sound based on asymmetric time signatures, repetitive rhythms, an angular guitar sound, and surreal, bitingly sarcastic lyrics.

Songs typically do not have traditional verse/chorus/verse structure and the arrangements are sparse, to the point where some describe them as "amelodic".

Shellac's signature sound is often associated with their enthusiasm for vintage Travis Bean guitars, a rare brand of aluminium-necked instruments, and the Interfax "Harmonic Percolator" distortion pedal.

Steve Albini is known to use copper plectrums and typically wraps his guitar strap around his waist rather than over his shoulder. The band prefers the intimacy of smaller clubs and live appearances are sporadic.

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