Electronic music is no stranger to the obscure sub genre, but Spotify’s list of its own created ones is truly a hipster sight to behold.
Firstly, explaining the methodology behind the genres, Spotify says:
“Spotify’s genres react to changes in music as they happen. Our music intelligence platform reads everything written about music on the web and listens to millions of new songs all the time to identify unique acoustic attributes. To create dynamic genres, we identify salient terms used to describe music (e.g., “math rock,” “IDM”, etc.), just as they start to appear. We then model genres as dynamic music clusters – groupings of artists and songs that share common descriptors, and similar acoustic and cultural attributes. When a new genre forms, we know about it, so you can discover it right away, too”.
Fair enough, but this still doesn’t change the fact that genre fragmentation, especially through algorithmic means, is ripe for the absurd. Take, for instance, a personal favourite: Vegan Straight Edge OR “hardcore punk that espouses a vegan and drug-free lifestyle. Lyrics feature themes about animal cruelty and clean living”. Or, this gem: New Weird America aka “an indie folk/rock variant descended from the psychedelic folk and rock of the ’60s and ’70s. Its influences are broad and eclectic, including metal, free jazz, electronic music, world music, Latin, noise, and even opera”.
So, scouring through Spotify’s latest genres, I’ve highlighted a few new electronic music specific ones, as well as their official descriptions below. Might I suggest you use this as a tool the next time you inevitably get caught in the endless spiral of obscure music knowledge conversation you and your friends most certainly will have again.
aggrotech: This is electronic music that fuses elements of electronic body music, industrial, noise, trance, and techno. Aggrotech typically features distorted and pitch-shifted vocals, militant lyrics, and a fast, danceable beat.
deep discofox: An goofily earnest genre featuring slick techno-disco and the occasional video.
destroy techno: An invented name for a particularly hard-to-describe experimental techno cluster.
ebm: Electronic body music combines post-industrial, electronic dance music, and synthpunk. It first came to prominence in Belgium in the early ’80s.
fidget house: This variant of electro house features clicky treble and sludgly basslines, with blurry synths and a midrange tempo.
lowercase: Lowercase refers to extreme ambient minimalist music. Lowercase recordings feature very quiet sounds, such as ruffling of papers, and amplifies them to an extreme volume.