3 Bizarre But Interesting Music Genres

Those of you who follow my #MusicMonday posts on Facebook and Twitter will know that I’m always on the lookout for new music while rediscovering old favorites.

Recently, with the help of Sam Sutherland of the entertaining and informative This Exists, I’ve found several genres that, while I’m still somewhat unfamiliar with, I’m eager to learn more about and find more of. What’s more, I’d like to share them with you.

Vaporwave

Taking it’s name from the term Vaporware, Vaporwave is an oddly soothing genre of music born from other odd genres like Seapunk and Plunderphonics in that it is mostly constructed from samples of other audio clips to create an almost unrecognizable and unique audio track.

Most music videos attached to Vaporwave tend to be collages of clips of commercials and T.V. shows from the 80’s and 90’s. This is appropriate given the genres ideology.

These images combined with it’s similarity to New Age, Smooth Jazz, and Muzak in tone cause the songs to become a parody of hyper-consumerist society as they are non-commercial music that draws inspiration from some of the most commercially driven imagery and sound.

In short, Vaporwave is the witter, more subtle, New Age version of Anarcho-Punk.

I’m always excited to learn more about politically charged art and I hope to find more examples of great Vaporwave.

SoundClown

Users of SoundCloud might have accidentally stumbled across these while looking for that new experimental Trap beat they heard so much about.

While not music in the traditional sense, SoundClown or Weird SoundCloud are short audio tracks usually under a minute long made purely for comedic purposes; usually highlighting how silly certain aspects of pop culture are in a unique way.

In addition to being simple, humorous, and not taking up to much valuable head space after listening, SoundClown also acts as a sort of internet comedy time capsule – blending together various examples of silliness into something short and easy to digest. This makes it perfect for cataloging pop culture in a humorous way, as well as providing a quick emotional pick-me-up during times when you may feel blue.

I’m not sure that it’s art, but I do know that I like it. And that’s good enough for me.

Black MIDI

No, that’s not Black Metal’s digital cousin.

For the uninitiated, MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) is popular format that makes most forms of electronic music possible. It allows multiple instruments to be played from a single controller and is the preferred format for samplers, synthesizers, and drum machines.

Now imagine if a MIDI chip tune didn’t just play a few notes, but played ALL THE NOTES.

Black MIDI’s get their name from the fact that, when translated to sheet music, the sheet seems to turn black with notes. If you ever wondered if someone ever wrote a song to be intentionally impossible to play with human hands just to drive perfectionist musicians insane, know you know.

The hard part isn’t finding samples of these bewilderingly complex songs so much as finding a computer that can handle them. Many of the files for these song are huge and contain note counts in the several billions.

If you dare to challenge your computer with these songs, keep a fire extinguisher on hand. Your processor may burst into flame as it barfs concentrated sound at you.

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One thought on “3 Bizarre But Interesting Music Genres

  1. Pingback: 3 Songs You’ve Probably Heard and Loved (But Don’t Remember Where You Heard Them From) | The Awkward Agent's Archive

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