The music industry has been turned on its head over the past 10 years as the rise of the portable mp3 player and streaming sites like Spotify became the norm, making the compact disc look increasingly like yesterday’s technology.
While that’s changed how we listen to music, there has also been a shift in the type of music we enjoy – genres that didn’t exist at all five years ago, or at least weren’t popular enough to define, are now everywhere.
So just in case you’re feeling a little left behind or have been satisfied keeping your tastes within the standard genres like pop, rock and dance, we’ve put together a list of new sounds to help broaden your horizons.
Like the name suggests, this genre brings together the instruments, melodies and songwriting of folk and soul music with the electronic music that has dominated since the charts in recent years.
It is said to have started in the early 2000s in the United Kingdom but the genre came to be more mainstream via Caribou’s 2005 album The Milk of Human Kindness, which was built on by Goldfrapp’s 2008 offering Seventh Tree.
However, it’s only in the past couple of years that it has gone off, thanks to two of the most hipster-ish artists you’re ever likely to listen to – Chet Faker and Alt-J.
Melbourne-born Faker’s Built on Glass dominated the 2014 Hottest 100 and he is making strides in Europe and America while the UK’s Alt-J have an enormous following all around the world thanks to their debut An Awesome Wave and follow-up This Is All Yours.
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Our parents have been line-dancing to country music in town halls since waaaaaaaaay back, but this genre is a little different to the one that helped them stay fit (or save their relationships) with that infectious 5,6,7,8 four-step jig.
Remember when Avicii used acoustic guitars in Wake Me Up? Or when Pitbull and Kesha did a music video in a saloon?
Yep, that’s CDM and yep, it’s that bad. It’s almost as bad as the thought of your parents dancing to country music. Please, someone make it go away.
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One music writer called this genre, which emerged in the late 2000s, a “dimension where the most detested trends in pop music combine”.
It is the genre where ‘Crunk’ and ‘Screamo’ music combine. For popular examples of the former, think Get Low by Lil John and for the latter, cast your mind back to band The Used.
According to the same article, Panic! At The Disco were the first to set the genre in motion when their self-titled debut album in 2005 mixed emo with a slight rap style of vocal delivery.
Who are the most popular exponents of the Crunkcore genre? Why did you have to ask. The answer is 3OH!3.
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Ratchet is a sub-genre of rap and hop hip that purposefully turns all of their heavy, dirty and in-your-face aspects up to more extreme levels.
Songs are framed to be purposefully and unashamedly offensive and the genre has found success with the American university frat party clan – it’s the kind of music best (only) enjoyed when you’re at that age and in that frame of mind.
One music journo wrote that the genre is merely a “simplistic … reworking of previous” hip hop trends. Whatever it is, its seminal nature hinges on the way Ratchet chorus’ get in your head and stay there. See video below.
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British band My Vitriol were asked if their 2001 album Finelines was ‘shoegaze’ in genre – they said no, it’s actually ‘Nu Gaze’. And with that a genre was born.
Based on the mid-80s ‘shoegaze’ phenomenon in the UK, Nu Gaze borrows on its contemporary’s dreamy guitar-loop driven sound with muted vocals.
Artists who have perfected the art of Nu Gaze today include M83, Silversun Pickups, Beach House and even Australia’s own Van She.
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