Discover new music simply and efficiently

If you’re older than 26 (i.e., “old”), you’re well aware that keeping musically current is tricky — you’re stuck with your old standbys, incapable of discovering which new or unfamiliar artists (out of a gazillion) you might be into. So we were delighted to log on to a website that takes the place of an omniscient friend: TuneGlue.

The site bills itself as a “relationship explorer.” Type in the name of a musical artist you like, hit expand, and a cluster of similar-in-feel artists will appear — each linkable to another five or six to discover. Sure, we get why a search for Radiohead would give us Arcade Fire, but we’re flummoxed (and fascinated) to see the path from Wolf Parade to the Unicorns to Architecture in Helsinki. An 18-year-old visiting the VSL Test Kitchen was shocked and impressed by the (cool) obscurity of some of the acts in the TuneGlue database, and her father was happy it included Erik Satie and Igor Stravinsky.

The graphics are simple and sleek — you can click to display the band’s releases and buy them — but the true joy is seeing just how expansive each musical web can be (answer: nearly off your computer screen).

This post is from Observer Short List—an email of three favorite things from people you want to know. Sign up to receive OSL here. Discover new music simply and efficiently