Thanks to the internet, the days of elite criticism are long gone. If you wish to keep up-to-date with what’s happening in the buzzing music world but you want to go beyond the tip of the iceberg of mainstream media and charts, the best thing you can do is follow a music blog!
Think about it: they are independent, which means they don’t follow a bigger agenda of promotion, nor do they need to compromise with producers. They will simply put up what they genuinely think it’s best for you to listen to.
Since not everyone has got enough time to personally research all the upcoming artists and what’s happening with the most famous ones, a music blog can give you an organised, informed overview.
Furthermore, they are usually keen to cover emerging and underground artists, giving a chance for followers to submit their material and be featured.
There’s a whole spectrum of blogs for you to choose from, but here’s my top ten.
1 – Stamp The Wax
Well-presented and organised, it offers several sections of news and features, from lifestyle to—for the geekiest ones—Talking Tech. Their most distinctive attribute, though, has to be the Monday Morning Mixtape: weekly creative mixes designed to set a particular atmosphere (why not try their ‘Sunshine tracks from the Ivory Coast’ or ‘1975 sun-spilled Miami R&B to 1966 Latin jazz’?).
2 – Hit The Floor Magazine
HTF never misses a festival, nor the opportunity to go backstage and interview musicians. They are always on the look out for new albums and artists, but they also write broader features to investigate particular aspects of the music world. Furthermore, they have a separate section (The Closet) for those who are intrigued by the fashion side of the music industry.
3 – Gold Flake Paint
They offer long, informed features worthy of Rolling Stones, with exclusive interviews and reviews that focus on the person behind the songs. They also produce short overviews of emerging artists: brief, immediate presentations to catch your attention, but with music links should you wish to research them further.
4 – A&R Factory
They are constantly uploading more than one timely blogpost per day, covering different genres and always up to date with what’s been sung and recorded. They are one of the most respected music blogs, followed by many labels and radio stations—it’s not a coincidence that their logo says ‘where artists are discovered’.
5 – We Plug Good Music
Radio sessions and long features, both specific (to highlight new albums and artists) and more general, to have an overview of what’s going on in a particular field or genre.
6 – Drunken Werewolf
Well-written, fresh posts ‘with a twist of Bristolian zest,’ as they describe themselves. Their features offer very creative and original angles. They also constantly introduce new artists, with a tailored overview and song.
7 – High Clouds
The ‘music junkies holy bible’—as they call it—couldn’t be more up to date with the music industry: the short, snappy news posts are ideal for those who want to have a glimpse of what’s happening across different genres and locations.
8 – La Blogothèque
The uniqueness of this blog lies in what they call ‘take away shows’: exclusive intimate sessions with famous or emerging artists, that give us a chance to step into their world.
9 – For Folk’s Sake
First of all, a bonus for the pun in the title! This blog is specifically designed to shift the spotlight onto folk music and genres that are unlikely to be found on the front page of most magazines. It also includes interviews and exclusive sessions with musicians.
10 – Metal Injection
While other blogs occasionally—or rarely, let’s be honest—mention what’s happening in the world of metal music, this one is entirely dedicated to it. It includes news, reviews, podcasts and a wide variety of videos, conveniently organised in different channels: from ‘Kids in Metal’ to ‘Rockumentary’.