How do you discover new music? Music recommendation tips thread

How do you find new music? I tend to read pitchfork regularly and have a look at metacritic every now and then, to pick off the highest rated albums.

In the age of the algorithm, do we still need music reviews?

Never liked those algorithm shite. I get new music from various boards I go on, and asking folk on last fm. Got one mate with impeccable taste so stick with him too.

Usually just word of mouth from mates, but also a youtube channel called Jimmy that’s mostly punk compilations from stuff released that month

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Like just found this band off his June mix, what a banger

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Yes. Those algorithm sites (like metacritic) are based off of reviews.

I do use metacritic too. But just for a glance of what to put on my ‘to listen’ list. I quite like the Quietus if I want something different. Also RA for my electronic music. Occasionally find something I like on 6 music which is my alarm. Its hit and miss though.

I also find this website Drowned In Sound very useful not sure you’ve heard about it. Its basically a blog like music website. Very UK based, quite good though. I would stay off the ‘community’ forums though. Its just a bunch of rude people talking about dental floss.

Unless by algorithm sites you mean like or youtube suggestions. Both are good ways of finding music but not great for searching something different to what you usually listen to.

spot band names around the place and give the album a spin on Spotify if it seems like something i’d be interested in. can rarely remember how i’ve actually heard of them, i just seem to became aware/conscious of a band’s existence.

I mainly use a site called Let’s Loop (full disclosure: I also work there). It let’s you follow people with similar taste to you so you can discover songs, albums, playlists, gigs etc from their recommendations.

It also has a New Music section that’s updated regularly with all the best new songs & albums (it gives a brief write-up on each one too).

If you want to get a bit more involved you can share your favourite songs, albums etc or just collect them on your profile. Works with a bunch of different streaming services too (YouTube, SoundCloud, Spotify, Deezer etc). Here’s my profile if you’re interested:


I actually use Matt Wilkinson’s playlists on Apple Music. Some amazing music has come out of that and he was the Editor of NME’s Radar section until July this year so he knows a lot of new bands which can be quite handy.

REcommended for synthwave and 80s lovers:

Mostly from listening to Internet radio. I’m also enjoying the Discover Weekly and Release Radar playlists from Spotify because they’ve been really great for me.

I don’t read reviews because I’d much prefer to just listen to the music. If I listen to something for the first time after having read a review then it’s going to influence my thoughts on the music right off the bat - especially if the review isn’t too nice.

I’ve just started using this app called Cymbal. It’s sort of an Instagram for music. You can post music from Spotify and Soundcloud to your profile, people can follow you. You can follow other profiles and you’ll end up with a stream of music in your feed.

Looks cool! I’m going to try this out.

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Agreed! Been visiting for about a decade or so and the amount of stuff that’s been recommended on here makes up a large chunk of my library.

I would also say to look at recent bands you like and what record label they’re on, then look through that label’s catalogue. This is much easier/quicker to do now, as a lot of small labels have their entire stuff up on Bandcamp.

Bonus tip: Get an office job where you can spend hours dicking about on the internet, and subsequently slog through as much music related shit as you can find.

I try out a few different review sites every year and keep reading the ones that continually recommend albums that I enjoy.

I usually pick the site by looking up an album that I consider a 9+ and finding other sites that rated it similarly, then giving their most recent recommended albums a listen.

That’s how I found DiS and I’ve been reading for a couple years now!

BBC radio 6 has a great weekly playlist on Spotify. They also have tons of podcasts.

I also release new music playlists every so often. The latest playlist launched today can be listened to at

I subscribe to the following record shop mailing lists:

Norman Records (the best!)
Monorail Records (good recommendations but a short email)

I also discover loads of stuff in the run-up to Primavera when I Spotify all the artists that I have never heard.

weirdly enough I was going to start a thread on this…for me, Clive:

*Uncut and Loud & Quiet magazine reviews 25%
*BBC 6 Music (mainly Gideon Coe but also a bit of Guy Garvey, Cerys, Gilles Petersen, Roundtable) 15%
*This forum (genre specific threads, end of year round-ups) 15%
*Online Sites (used to be pitchfork but went off it about 5 years ago now tbh metacritic linking to the sites I then trust most for a fuller review - this one, the quietus etc) 15%
*Labels I trust 10%
*Record shops (Resident has a good weekly update email and a brilliant end of year booklet) 10%
*Google Play algorithims 10%

oh yes…like Jack too…festival line-ups that I am going to…particularly Primavera…I discovered Mineral this way and very grateful for that…

when you check which label your favorite artists are on, chances are they’ll sign or support artists that you will also like so checkin in on their updates can help lead to new music too!

FADER, Pitchfork, Gorilla vs. Bear, BBC, KTT, Soulection Radio are some of my favorite publications // radio mixes that share a bunch of goodies

and I like to look at album booklets for albums – those production credits can be name goldmines

I’ve got a bunch of playlists from sources I trust and a constant rotation of ten albums. When I’m done with an artist I smack random one of the playlists and whatever it lands on I’ll discover/return to artists back catalog.


Also friends.