The Hipster Music Index: someone finally scientifically quantified which bands are hip


Someone’s crunched the numbers! Now we know which bands we should be into and which ones are too popular to be hip. Who knew Boards of Canada was for the bros?

So, the first scientific criterion for identifying a hipster band is that Pitchfork likes them. Pitchfork reviewers like a lot of mainstream music, however, so that’s not enough. The second criterion is that not many people should like that band. The music must be obscure so that people can say, “My favorite band is X, you’ve probably never heard of them.”

To measure obscurity, we looked at the number of Facebook likes the Pitchfork review received. All else being equal, we expected a hipster band to get fewer Facebook shares than a non-hipster band with the same score.

For a given Pitchfork Review Score, the trend line uses a linear regression to predict how many Facebook likes you’d expect the album to receive given its critical acclaim.

By our criteria, the further below the line a blue dot is, the more hipster the band. (It’s high quality but obscure.) Dots above the line represent more mainstream (not hipster) bands.

See the full breakdown, band by band, below:




  1. Drake is listed in the hipster index? haha

  2. Bobby Moses says:

    So auteur!

    Much Pitchforks!


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