Sunday, June 2, 2013

Did You Know Psychobilly is a Genre?

If you're looking for a way to drown your afternoon, I've got just the thing. Check out Every Noise at Once. It's a website that maps out music genres based on an algorithm. The map is huge, including just about every genre you can think of (bluegrass! chillwave!) and a bunch you've probably never heard of (psychobilly!). If you click on the names of the genres, you get a 30 second clip from a song deemed representative. If you click on the >> you get a map of the artists within the genre, so for example, Riot grrrl plays a Heavens to Betsy clip and brings up a map that lists Sleater-Kinney, Bratmobile, Bikini Kill, Huggy Bear, Bangs and about a hundred others. Most of the bands have playable clips as well. You can also hit "scan" at the top of the page and it'll bounce around from genre to genre, following tejano with gothic symphonic metal and God knows what other delights.

I'm sure you could find things to whine about with this site. After all, I don't know I would have picked "We Are the Champions" by Queen to represent the entire genre of rock, or put Dire Straits in the art rock category, and don't ask me why jazz fusion is below Nashville sound, either, but that's almost beside the point. This is a cool data-driven exploration of music, and more importantly, a possible doorway to finding new bands to love. On a goofier note, it's a good time reading all the genres names. (What is anti-folk? Apparently, Kimya Dawson. And just so you know, there's a difference between deathgrind, grindcore, and goregrind.) On one last note, God bless this site for attempting to sort out "indie rock," whatever the heck that is anymore.

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