I May Have Bad Taste in Music, But I Have Good Taste in Music Videos


My friends always make fun of me because I have “bad” taste in music. When they want a show or movie or game recommendation, I’m their man, but for music? They stay away as they probably don’t want to listen to video game soundtracks or rap from other countries.

My latest questionable music choice is Dubstep, a style I can best describe as techno meets electronica meets a hydrogen bomb. I first got into it because Starcraft players I was watching stream online were playing it in the background. I hated it at first, but it slowly grew on me to the point where it’s the only thing I listen to at the gym.

Anyway, I normally wouldn’t subject you to this, but I saw this video on a reader’s Facebook wall this weekend (what up Griffin), and I couldn’t resist as I can’t remember the last time I saw a music video that was actually cool. With the death of MTV, such things rarely exist anymore.

The song is “First of the Year” by Skrillex, and I won’t ruin what happens, but just know that it is awesome.

  • flash1049

    Really cool video, but not a big fan of the song…I like dubstep, but this one is just a little too chaotic for me.

  • Jadis

    creepy. It’s like if Samantha from Bewitched had an evil grand-daughter.

  • andrew

    Cool video. Kind of has a Aphex Twin vibe to it.

    Not a big dubstep fan myself, but some of it is pretty good.

  • Laura

    I noticed that you never really talk about music on here except for a random mashup here and there. I guess this is why… 🙂

  • Levi

    I was going to say “Hey, you can’t have a bad taste in music if you’re listening to some dubstep”

    But then I saw it was a Skrillex video.


  • @Levi

    Any suggestions? I’m rather new to the genre.

  • Bad Acid

    Here’s what you do: get some good techno or electronica. Set it up on a system with an equalizer. Now, flick the switches up and down like a hyperactive 7 year old. Congratulations, you’re making dubstep.

  • Peter

    not all dubstep persay, but bassnectar, pretty lights and deadmau5

  • FullestJ

    +1 Levi.

    Paul, there’s a big divide in dubstep. I’d venture to say the term is pretty much meaningless now, as it means something completely different to North Americans as it does to the Europeans and (especially) Brits who invented the stuff. Artists like Skrillex (who himself has said he doesn’t produce dubstep music, so that’s a tag that’s been pretty much forced on him), Borgore, Excision, Datsik, Bassnectar, etc. make a very aggressive, midrange driven style of music that’s adopted the moniker of dubstep here in North America. It’s mosh music, which isn’t what dubstep was ever about. Fans of the original stuff, and it’s many permutations, will jokingly (or sometimes not) refer to it as brostep.

    Dubstep proper is deeper than it is overtly aggressive. The best place to look for stuff like that would be the Deep Medi (http://www.discogs.com/label/Deep+Medi+Musik) or DMZ (http://www.discogs.com/label/DMZ) labels, both of which are connected through Mala (who, incidentally, would be the artist I most recommend checking out on their roster, but they’re all solid). DMZ has been around since dubstep’s inception as a label, as a production duo (Mala & Coki), and as a VERY popular club night. Arguably the most popular dubstep night today. That’s important because dubstep is meant to be heard out and on proper systems. That kind of sub-bass can’t be handled through headphones or laptop speakers. In fact, some will argue that the popular style of dubstep here in North America was popularized because it’s heavily midrange focused (those chainsaw synth lines present in all of it), instead of being so focused on deep bass. Midrange comes through fine on YouTube, but deep basslines don’t (listen to James Blakes’ “Limit To Your Love” on laptop speakers and then headphones and you’ll hear a whole layer of sound that you didn’t previously), and most North American fans listen through YouTube because there were no established places to catch dubstep here.

    For the sake of brevity (which, frankly, I’m probably well beyond at this point), I won’t go into the many different variations of bass music that exist now as a result of dubstep’s massive influence. Suffice it to say that it exists more as a culture of grouped genres of music that share very similar roots and attract the same group of people but can sound vastly different from one another.

    I’m not here to argue that one is better than another (though I think it’s clear I’ve got a preference), because music is subjective. If you like stuff like Skrillex you won’t necessarily like the same stuff I do, though I think you should definitely give it a shot as I find that once you leave the world of the overly aggressive party music that he and others like him produce then it becomes infinitely more rewarding and interesting, but then again I take music too seriously.

    All that to say, I can’t help you find any other artists like Skrillex, but if you’re interested in a wider range of stuff than I can definitely make some specific recommendations (and try to cut down on the word count while doing it).

  • @FullestJ

    Sure, make some recommendations. I’m not confined by anything that has to be Skrillex-ian.

  • FullestJ

    I was going to try to break them down into roughly similar groups, but that got ridiculous. Either way, these cover a wide range, so give a few a try and see what you think. Stars mark out artists that are particularly important or songs that made a particular mark.

    *Digital Mystikz – Mountain Dread March
    V.I.V.E.K. – Pulse
    Kryptic Minds – Can’t Sleep
    Addison Groove – ‘Fuk Tha 101
    Addison Groove – This Is It
    *Peverelist – Dance Til The Police Come
    *Ramadanman – Work Them
    *Girl Unit – IRL (Bok Bok Remix)
    Mosca – Square One VIP
    Benjamin Damage & Doc Daneeka – Creeper
    FaltyDL – You Stand Uncertain
    *Burial – Archangel
    Guido – Mad Sax
    Ikonika – Idiot (if you like 8bit weirdness, check this)
    Instra:mental – Voyeur
    Jamie XX & Gil Scott-Heron – New York Is Killing Me
    *Kode9 & The Spaceape – 9 Samurai
    Scuba – So You Think You’re Special
    *Joy Orbison – Hyph Mngo
    *Shackleton – Blood On My Hands
    Untold – Stop What You’re Doing
    Omar & Zed Bias – Dancing (I think I focused too heavily on dark stuff, and not enough fun stuff, so this should balance that out).

    If you enjoyed any of that in particular I can definitely give you some better leads. Alternatively, anything by Benga and/or Skream would be great. They both represents a pretty non-discriminatory link between both sides of the dubstep divide.

  • cd

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7EswfvjVmPM this covers the video game and the dubstep quota

  • Griffin

    Holla atcha.

    If you’re looking for dubstep, Paul, definitely listen to what FullestJ had to say. he pretty much hits the nail on the head. I’m into all sorts of EDM (electronic dance music), dubstep obviously being one of them. And, as he said, there are branches of dubstep. I follow the more aggressive school of thought (borgore, datsik, excision, bassnectar, etc.), although there are plenty of tracks with ambiance that I thoroughly enjoy.

    I hear this joke quite often, but people like myself who are very much into Electronic Music call dubstep the “weed of EDM,” because it’s what kids just getting into electronic listen to first before listening to other stuff, as it’s typically the most accessible. It’s the gateway genre of EDM.

    Skrillex isn’t really dubstep. People call him bro-step because he pushed the “dubstep sound” (call it what you will) into the mainstream. Many people hate him now for becoming famous. Many people hate him for making heavy electronic music essentially “mainstream” in college circles. If you look past that, however, he produces some ridiculous, albeit these days rather repetitive, sounds that were and are incredibly unique that I myself personally enjoy, as it corresponds to my other passion for death-metal.

  • Ricky

    Not really into dubstep, but that video was weird and kinda cool. I actually enjoy video game and movie scores/soundtracks as well, I really liked the post you did before with a list of 10 great Hans Zimmer tracks from movies, and i’d definately be interested if you did more posts like that, maybe can do one for your favorite video game soundtracks.

  • slygore

    Great find! Thanks