The Top 10 Under The Radar (For Now) Places To Read About Music

BKM_OPENER_02It’s a loud world out there — an audio menagerie of constantly updating music blogs, magazines, Twitter handles, and SoundCloud feeds. Where’s a girl to go to find something, well, just plain good to listen to? Below, a selection of ten under-the-radar music publications that are consistently churning out excellent aural-based editorial. Plug in your headphones, turn up the volume, and lose yourself. After the jump.


1. Wondering Sound

Age ain’t nothin’ but a number. Wondering Sound might be just about brand new, but it’s already packing one helluva an influential punch — likely due to the pedigrees of its founding members, eMusic veterans Jayson Green and Joseph Edward Keyes. What you’ll find here: A well curated mix of new music, thoughtful long form pieces on everything from Missy Elliott’s feminism to the complicated politics of playing Tel Aviv, and daily track premieres. In summary, the thinking man’s digital music publication.

2. Self-Titled

self-titled looks as good it sounds, featuring stand-out original photography to accompany its daily avalanche of new music, mixtapes, track premieres, and general music news. Sort of the dark older brother of online music publications, stop by their daily feed for audio that hews toward the noisy, electronic, post-punk-y edge of things.  Past highlights have included everything from epic conversations between Black Dice and Genesis P-orridge to the favorite cult Japanese films of noise musician Puce Mary.

3. Still Single

An informal Tumblr extension of Doug Mosurock’s column for Dusted, Still Single’s slap-dashery plays well with the type of grungy, hardcore, punk, and noise that they typically tend to spotlight. Come here for way-below-the-rader 7″ single reviews for bands with great names like Ausmuteants  and Rat Columns. Scroll the stream for anything labeled “Recommended.” That’s were you’ll find the true gems.


4. Pigeons & Planes

Pigeons & Planes is a place to keep up with everything from experimental pop to mainstream hip hop — a nice overview of what’s happening in music in 2014. They often host contests you actually want to win and space out the light-hearted listicles with some serious digging for good, new music. Check them out for their studied, in-depth Q&As with well-selected artists like Rome Fortune. Yesss.

5. Disco Naivete 

At any given moment, you could treat the homepage of Disco Naivete like the world’s best mixtape. Just go on down, hitting play along the way. The no frills format, well-curated selection of electro-infused pop music, and consistent focus on the thus undiscovered up-and-comers makes this one of the best blogs to go for feel good, super high energy new music. Put ya hands in the air.


6.  Aquarium Drunkard

The hermetic Uncle of music blogs. Aquarium Drunkard hews to the folky, bluesey category of things, doesn’t say too much about itself, and also hosts a killer Sirius radio show. Go here to find amazing reissues, ancient rarities, and features on musicians who lived-and-died long before your time. Get your feet wet with this timely end-of-summer September medley mix.

7. Ssssound!

We love Ssssound! because it’s highly personable, very conversational, and extremely well-curated. Cool photos paired with good sounds — a visual and aural feast that will keep you side-scrolling for at least a few hours. What keeps us coming back? The killer mixtapes and the curated Ssssoundtracks.

8. Other Music (newsletter)

Other Music is a New York City staple. A classic, old school record joint that has retained its neighborly air while its East Village home has steadily gentrified around it. The staff can always be counted on to know what’s-what across an unbelievable wide range of genres — a know-how that’s aptly reflected in their weekly, lengthy Other Music updates. These newsletters are like having a good, long chat with a record nerd. No stars or ratings; just capable, insightful prose about a bunch of good ass records. Cool.

9. No More Pop

This no frills musical outpost keeps things as simple as its name: one mixtape at a time. Nothing else to worry about. Just load the page and hit play. (Seriously, try it.)


10. Ad Hoc

Ad Hoc is the collaborative efforts of ten, globally-based music lovers/writers/thinkers/doers. Co-founded by Emilie Friedlander and Ric Leichtung, this is a musical-visual mash-up that shoots for the stars (only featuring the best of the best), with an emphasis on “emerging artists and musical movements that best exemplify the new grassroots, Internet-fueled DIY.” They also regularly publish a ‘zine that features more lengthy meditations on music, plus all kinds of original artwork for a crazy cross-spectrum of talented under-the-radar makers. We love everything about it.


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