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  • Does Last.Fm deliver accurate similar artists - #1 Red Hot Chili Peppers

    2 jun 2014, 00:38

    Liking a band is one thing...but if you want similar artists, will you be able to find some?

    I've decided to investigate several bands/artists myself and determine whether what last.fm gives as similar artists work out or are off. Today, it's the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

    The Red Hot Chili Peppers are classified as mainly ...though that genre is broad. Styles explored by the band include , , (specifically freaky styley, (earlier albums), and sometimes, (aka, rap-like vocals) and influences, but rarely.

    So, let's see what last.fm considers similar. I have filtered out the first 50 bands/artists that showed up as similar on 6/1/2014. And I made comments under each of the bands/artists based on what I know.

    SUPER
    John Frusciante
    --Well, he's the guitarist of RHCP...but I don't think his music is similar to RHCP.

    HIGH
    Ataxia
    John Frusciante and Josh Klinghoffer
    --Well, more RHCP side-projects. But once again, I have no idea if they are similar
    Foo Fighters
    --People think they are "similar" because both became popular in the (a la ), but the Foos branch out to / sounds with roots...stuff that RHCP lacks...so no.

    MEDIUM
    Rage Against the Machine
    --Rage utilized sounds with some rap vocals...possibliy similar
    Pearl Jam
    --Same as Foos except pure . I'm going to have to say no.
    Audioslave
    --Basically a vocalist with the rest of RATM minus Zach...not exactly similar
    Nirvana
    --Another act that has , , and influences...nope
    System of a Down
    --Now it really gets bad here...SOAD is ...and much much heavier than RHCP...really...why would anyone consider either similar?

    --The Offspring plays /...RHCP does have punk influences, but do they even sound like The Offspring...let's not cherry pick songs, but RHCP has no prominent punk sounds.
    Led Zeppelin
    Jimi Hendrix
    --Perhaps RHCP was influenced by both Zep and Jimi...but neither of them have funk sounds. Zeppelin was / while Jimi brought out the sound. RHCP primarily has funk sounds to most of their music...and when , they ain't acidy...in fact, it's more pop
    Alice in Chains
    -- band that has blatant influences...really?
    Incubus
    --Definitely similar...the band started as , just like RHCP. And their alternative rock songs are similar to RHCP's later career.

    LOW
    The White Stripes
    The Black Keys
    --Both bands are acts that bring in the ...not the
    Jane's Addiction
    --Definitely similar...Jane's Addicition did jump into sounds at times along with sounds.
    Metallica
    --Metallica is known for ing, not ing.
    Soundgarden
    --Grunge band that has psychedelic influences later...perhaps a few songs, but not a strong enough case as Soundgarden still goes as a hard rock band.
    AC/DC
    --Hard rock, heavy metal influences, blues influences, none present in RHCP
    Gorillaz
    --Band goes most of the times...no
    The Jimi Hendrix Experience
    --See Jimi Hendrix
    Guns N' Roses
    --See AC/DC...no funk
    Kasabian
    --I have no idea who this band is
    Queens of the Stone Age
    --Stoner/hard rock...heavy at times...NO.
    Pink Floyd
    --Another influence...but band is too rooted in /...sorry
    Ramones
    --Plain ole' punk rock...nope.
    Limp Bizkit
    --Well they have rap-oriented vocals like RHCP in the 90s...but then comes the sounds and well...No.
    Charlie Brown JR.
    --Who?
    Oasis
    --Britpop band...no funk based sounds...I'm going to pass
    Green Day
    --Purely rooted in and later . No.
    The Doors
    --Never listened to them enough times to judge a good enough opinion.
    Queen
    --Hard rock/...no
    The Kooks
    --No opinon
    Iron Maiden
    --Is RHCP a pure ? NO
    Coldplay
    --While Coldplay is primarily / like RHCP's later days, RHCP still sounds hard compared to Coldplay...no.
    The Raconteurs
    --Jack White project...assuming it sounds in a similar vein to The White Stripes, I'm going to have to say no.
    Korn
    --Nu metal...no
    Kings of Leon
    --Standard that have influences...feels too different.
    Aerosmith
    --Just like the other / bands...no
    Cage the Elephant
    -- roots...no
    Jamiroquai
    --Perhaps similar as the band has funk sounds, but haven't listened to enough by them to make an opinion
    Rise Against
    --NO
    Linkin Park
    --With LP relying on , , and influences, they're with other scenes. NO.
    Faith No More
    --Their days are quite similar..though they went in different directions as the 90s continued
    Franz Ferdinand
    --Standard /...nope
    Stone Temple Pilots
    --Started as before relying on ...nope
    Muse
    --One song (Panic Station) isn't enough to solidify Muse as being similar...sorry
    The Rolling Stones
    --Another classic rock band...I don't hear the similarities
    blink-182
    --See Green Day...

    So...yeah..last.fm feels like they fails. But what do you guys think? Can a strong case be made for one of these 50 band being similar to RHCP? Are there other bands not listed that would be considered similar to RHCP that should be mentioned? Shout down below, just note the following

    *Bands are not similar if both rock or both suck, otherwise I would think RHCP and SOAD are similar because I like both bands.
    *One song by a band being similar to one song by another band doesn't mean both bands are similar. We're going with the band's overall sound compared to another band's.
  • 2014 Grammies, the good, the bad, and the ugly.

    28 jan 2014, 03:36

    After skipping the 2013 show because well...nothing was interesting (and Mumford & Sons winning album of the year even though it did not with folk album of the year), the 2014 nominees came out. And once I heard Daft Punk was nominated for several awards including 2 of the top prizes that night, I was interested. Performances by Daft Punk, Queens of the Stone Age, Nine Inch Nails, and Metallica quickly grabbed my attention. I was going to watch the award show that had literally no credibility...just to see these guys perform.

    And it was worth the wait. Definitely.

    But enough said. There are things I need to vent out again.

    HIP-HOP IS DEAD? OR ARE WE JUST ALARMED?
    First, hip-hop got snubbed...now, most of the hip-hop purists lighted up when good kid, m.A.A.d city by Kendrick Lamar got defeated in 3/4 categories by The Heist by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis. Now...I haven't listened to either album enough to make a judgement (and I plan to do...well..there is one set of scrobbles for GKMC, but I was not focused when listening to it the first time...things are different this time), but from what I hear, the problem is as follows:
    *GKMC was massively praised as a masterpiece in similar fashion to My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Many expect this album to stand the test of time.
    *The Heist involved corny lyrics and is more than . Many also criticized Macklemore's flow and called him a hack.

    Metacritic ratings showed that GKMC had high praised. The Heist had decent but not as high as GKMC.

    A few thing I noticed though were both albums...seem to cater to different audiences. GKMC involves lyrics about his hometown of Compton and the dangerous surroundings he had to go through. The Heist on the other hand, was aimed as positivity as Macklemore was born in the middle-class and not in the hoods. He focused on positive issues/LGBT rights. These are the issues and topics he was more interested in. As a result, GKMC appealed to hip-hop purists while Macklemore crossed over more into pop. It's two different sounds to hip-hop. And if anything, more variety in hip-hop is always good.

    So, did the Grammies screw up again in hip-hop? Regarding their choice of hip-hop album/songs, we'll have to let time have it's course. They did however screw the hip-hop awards by having only the rap/sung award in the main broadcast while the other 3 (album, rap song, rap performance). Hip-hop got shafted, but not as much as R&B which had no awards presented during the main telecast.

    Hey, at least there were two hip-hop albums up for AOTY.

    But IMO, there was a genre that got shafted worse than hip-hop...

    ROCK IS DEAD! NO SERIOUSLY

    music. It's one of the most popular forms of music. I previously ranted about how the nominees were way too biased towards older acts and it was a huge issue. The grammies proved themselves to be inept by awarding best rock album to Celebration Day by Led Zeppelin which was a live album released in late 2012 of a concert from 2007...as I said...a concert from 2007 literally won 6 years after it was recorded. And with actual new releases from Queens of the Stone Age, David Bowie, and Black Sabbath, there was really no need to just hand the award to Zeppelin. This was actually Zep's first grammy award ever...though all 3 surviving members all had won grammys before so...

    Worse though was the Rock Song of the Year award which was literally won by Nirvana + Paul McCartney (minus Kurt Cobain). And The Rolling Stones was up for rock song of the year as well. One would have expected stuff like by Tame Impala and Vampire Weekend...the problem is those bands were trapped in the Alternative category which had just one award.

    I really hope some of the reviewers are pointing out this flaw instead of saying "yay, Zeppelin and Sabbath won yay yay yay". By selecting old bands each year, you are literally stating rock is dead. Rock is not dead...Queens of the Stone Age released one of the best albums of 2013...they were up for album of the year. The Black Keys have taken in blues rock influences and created a fresh sound in the last few years.

    What needs to be done:
    *Revamp the staff who decides the rock categories...get some fresh new faces who can bring in some modern acts to the equation.
    *Expand the Alternative genre out...introduce awards for alternative performance and alternative song categories. Might as well split solo/dual performances as well (and possibly for the categories that used to have this as well).
    *And please get some alternative awards up during the main telecast.

    One last thing, there was a rock performance to close out the program featuring Nine Inch Nails, Queens of the Stone Age, Dave Grohl and Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac. And the producers suddenly cut to commercials near the end of the song unnecessary. Trent Reznor exploded again on twitter...and probably now won't be fooled again to ever come on the Grammys. That's not helping rock out either you know.


    I think I'm done venting. Now time for some praise.


    DAFT PUNK

    Of course my main reason for even watching the show was because Daft Punk was going to perform live. And man they didn't disappoint. The performance with Stevie Wonder along with Pharell and Nile Rodgers was great...and the crowd definitely got into the performance. The performance of Get Lucky featured mashup elements of Le Freak, Another Star, and even other Daft Punk songs as well. Makes you wonder how DP will answer with their next Alive live album.

    And Daft Punk managed to win 4 awards that night, including the Best Electronic/Dance album which was a gimme. Each award afterwards became heartstomping for me as the competition got tough and tough. Daft Punk easily won Best Pop/Duo Performance with Get Lucky over the atrocious Blurred Lines (which I feared could have won the award). Then came Record of the Year which experts slated would be won by Royals by Lorde. God that song is so anti-hip-hop. I celebrated loudly once I heard Get Lucky won. But Daft Punk was not going to win the top prize of the night...Album of the Year

    All the hotshots and experts had slated the award to go to The Heist. I could live with DP holding record of the year rather than the over-rated Royals...but guess what, AOTY belongs to Daft Punk too. For the first time in my life, I was happy that the album of the year was correct (and rightfully so). Suddenly, Random Access Memories was back in my mp3 player. It'll be the only album I blast out this week.

    Despite the huge flaws with the hip-hop/rock categories, Daft Punk made up for it. And also got to see some great performances. Metallica performing [track artist=Metallica[track]One[/track] with pianist Lang Lang and Kendrick Lamar[/aritst] raising the house with Imagine Dragons. Sure there were cringe performances from Robin Thicke, the mass marriages during Macklemore & Ryan Lewis's run of [track artist=Macklemore & Ryan Lewis]Same Love[/track], the mostly lackluster country performances (minus Taylor Swift who seemed to do some interesting things during Ken's performance), and of course Katy Perry. Watching the show was worth it.

    Too bad Beyonce already has 2015 wrapped up. Ah well
  • The grammies fail to rock again...LITERALLY!

    23 dec 2013, 15:33

    It's that time again, the music industry's annual show where they crown what they believe is the greatest music ever which 99.9% of the population will literally disagree with. I could go more into the big mistake with the selected album up for Album of the Year and all, but I wanted to focus on a bigger issue.

    Rock music.

    Yes...Rock music....

    Earlier this year, a certain Radioactive made noise across radio stations. My local rock station that once relied on playing a ton of modern rock like Disturbed, Three Days Grace, and Godsmack, decided to start playing Radioactive. Despite having nothing to do with nu metal, post-grunge, and hard rock, the song got mass overplay on the station...and I mean massive overplay. This song literally changed the radio format on the station as suddenly songs that they would never ever play like Sail, Cough Syrup, Madness, 1901, even freakin Fall Out Boy with their 2013 hit My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark (Light 'Em Up) was literally added on to the station. Songs by Disturbed, Three Days Grace, Godsmack got lowered. Limp Bizkit vanished from the station. And when competition from a new station appeared, the station changed up their sound even more by bringing in bands the station ignored and breached into even more classic rock bands like Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, The Clash, Aerosmith (hard rock bands like AC/DC, Black Sabbath, and Guns N' Roses had already been played on the station for the longest time). So it feels like rock music is changing. Perhaps with the changing sound, the grammies would start to acknowledge it.


    Instead, we're trapped in the stone age. Well, yeah, Queens of the Stone Age is up for rock album of the year but...

    For rock album of the year, we got releases from David Bowie, Black Sabbath, Neil Young, and ....Led Zeppelin?

    Yes...while Bowie and Sabbath can be let go as their albums did generate noise this year, the others are iffy. Specifically when a live album of a recording of 2007 is up for rock album of the year.

    Ladies and gentlemen...we are literally trapped in the stone age. What does this mean? It mean Jimi Hendrix recording a special concert in the 60s...it's found from the vault, remastered and released as an album in 2015...it could literally win rock album of the 2015 despite being recorded centuries ago. Is this the message we should be sending out about rock music?

    And don't give me this bullshit that "ROCK IS CRAP RIGHT NOW WETH NACKLEBACK". Seriously, Nickelback hasn't done much other than releasing a Greatest Hits album. Bands like QOTSA, Muse, The Black Keys, Tame Impala, Arcade Fire (who would have been up for album of the year if it was released during the eligibility period so it'll be in 2015 instead of next year's award show), and Vampire Weekend have been making some noise (but the grammies place them in the Alternative album category which IMO is no longer needed).

    Of the 6 albums up for best rock album, only 2 albums is from a band/artist originating from the 90s and beyond (QOTSA/Kings of Leon). Everyone else (Sabbath, Bowie, Zeppelin, Neil Young) are all from the classic rock era. The main noises in rock have been placed in the unnecessary alternative album category.

    And how bout Best Rock Song where we have stuff from Sabbath, Paul McCartney (w/Dave Grohl's gang), and look...The Rolling Stones. Seriously, I give up.

    And Best Metal Performance has been overly biased towards older acts in the last few years. Since 2005, most of the winners have been older acts (Motorhead, Metallica, Slayer, Judas Priest, and [artist]Iron Maiden) with most new acts rarely win (last year was an bizzare year that saw Halestorm beat Iron Maiden when hard rock and metal was combined). But because of relying on giving the award to old acts, they deny new and rising metal acts a chance at getting a grammy...Machine Head[artist], [artist]Mastodon, Lamb of God, and Dream Theater. This year Sabbath is bound to win it because they are Sabbath. I mean, Killswitch Engage, Volbeat w/ King Diamond, and Dream Theater are up for the award, but might not be stronger than Sabbath this year so I won't really blast this award, but the show needs to start looking at newer acts to carry the legacy on.

    And this is probably why there isn't a rock album up for album of the year this year. 2 hip-hop albums, and one electronic album from Daft Punk which I honestly hope wins the AOTY category. Rock is on the sidelines. It's time to get some younger talent into the grammy committee and advance rock forward.
  • Do you really think last.fm's similar artists are accurate?

    22 okt 2013, 14:25

    Hello world.

    You really think so? Then take a look at these so-called similar artists found on each of the following artists among the first 50 artists listed:

    Metallica - System of a Down, Slipknot, Godsmack, KoRn, Disturbed, Rammstein, The Offspring, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Children of Bodom, In Flames, Apocalyptica, Alice in Chains, Bullet For My Valentine, Lamb of God, Stone Sour, Nirvana, Limp Bizkit, Rage Against the Machine, Deep Purple, Nightwish

    --You really think nu metal like KoRn and Slipknot sound the same? When was Pink Floyd known for making headbashing tunes? I never knew Offspring was a metal band. I didn't know Metallica had harsh vocals like Children of Bodom, Lamb of God, and In Flames! I didn't know Metallica had rap vocals like Limp Bizkit and Rage Against the Machine. And I most certainly think Led Zeppelin is a true metal band since thrash and heavy metal is the first thing that comes to mind when someone says Led Zeppelin


    The Offspring - Papa Roach, Limp Bizkit, Metallica, System of a Down, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Foo Fighters, Nickelback, Godsmack, Three Days Grace, Rage Against the Machine, AC/DC, KoRn, Bullet For My Valentine, 3 Doors Down, Disturbed, Hollywood Undead, Slipknot, Guano Apes, P.O.D., In Flames, Serj Tankian, Dope, Breaking Benjamin, Static-X, NIrvana, DragonForce, Puddle of Mudd, Iron Maiden, Linkin Park, Rammstein

    --So wait, I'm supposed to believe that the nu metal craze of the 90s featured The Offspring? I'm supposed to believe Offspring played funk rock music like RHCP. I'm supposed to believe Offspring is a rap-oriented group like RATM, LP, and Hollywood Undead? A post-grunge outfit LIKE FUCKING NICKELBACK? In Flames did punk rock or pop punk? This is news to me!!!



    Nirvana - Sex Pistols, Metallica, Led Zeppelin, The Doors, Guns N' Roses, The White Stripes, Ramones, System of a Down, Joy Division, Korn, The Beatles, Queens of the Stone Age, Pink Floyd, Green Day, Marilyn Manson

    Gee, Nirvana is hard rock like Led Zeppelin. And they play psychedelic music like Pink Floyd and The Doors...obviously the Beatles and their happy pop and rock and roll is similar to Nirvana and their negative creep grunge sounds. And obviously it's nu metal since it's similar to KoRn and SOAD (I consider SOAD part of the nu metal scene but not as a nu metal band).


    And there's more out there. This is all thanks to the brilliant formula for finding similar artists. Congratulations, if you love Guns N' Roses, you will love Nirvana (and vice versa).
  • 2013 Album Releases

    4 aug 2013, 19:44

  • More maplerage!! THE INTERNET FAILS AT FINDING SIMILAR ARTISTS!!!

    11 sep 2012, 05:15

    The band is Rise Against. It was around the time of Appeal to Reason that I started getting into them. I also owe it to Guitar Hero and the inclusion of Prayer of the Refugee that got me into the band. Became only the 4th / in my collection aside from Green Day, The Offspring, and blink-182 (I now got stuff like The Clash, Bad Religion, Dropkick Murphys, Social Distortion, and Rancid in my library).

    Rise Against plays a style of and . There are plenty of other of bands that play melodic hardcore sound...but finding something similar to Rise Against has not only been a headache, but a FUCKING disaster. Whether it be internet radio stations (seriously, spotify fucking recommended me Eminem for listening to Rise Against...a freaking act to a band?

    How bout being recommended a ton of , , (seriously...DROWNING POOL???), (literally?)? Not to mention the band tends to be political...where is the politics in a song about Faking It to a girlfriend (Fake It)?

    And right here on last.fm, I see some of the worst similar artists stuff I've seen in ages!! I'm going to rant against every single band in the top 20 similar artists...this will have explicit language and very negative energy. If you are easily offended by this, please leave and continue to think Linkin Park is 100% similar to Rise Against in terms of sound...

    So here we go (these ranking are of 9/10/2012:

    #1 Billy Talent - well, maybe not melodic hardcore, but enough punk rock stuff in their music...though they also go alternative rock, sure a hell lot similar than Seether and Shinedown

    #2 Sum 41 - Even though they are primarily pop punk, they also have a lot of punk rock songs...some of them are near melodic hardcore too...a few go into System of a Down territory (THEY ARE ALSO NOT SIMILAR TO RISE AGAINST!!)...once again, they are more similar to Rise Against than Five Finger Death Punch and All That Remains

    #3 Anti-Flag - not 100% familiar with them, but I do have several listens of them...straight out punk rock, which RA does at times, probably more similar than Billy Talent and Sum 41

    #4 The Offspring - I listen to them, and I know they are familiar...well, it's more of The Offspring recently trying to be familiar to Rise Against. Anyone here The Future Is Now and Turning Into You?

    #5 Three Days Grace - *breaths in



    FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK YOOOOOOOOOOOOU SIMILAR ARTISTS


    YOU FUCKING THINK A FUCKING POST-GRUNGE/HARD ROCK BAND IS FUCKING SIMILAR. Explain to me how the fuck you determined a band that writes hard rock songs with no punk influences is similar to a band that has a ton of hardcore punk influences? Also, Rise Against's music is mainly political...what are political 3DG songs? Literally half of the time, it's relationship issues (with R.A., it's maybe a few songs and there's some political references in them).

    BUT LITERALLY, THIS IS THE FUCKING REASON WHY I NEVER LISTEN TO SIMILAR ARTISTS RADIOS ON LAST.FM!!! THEY SUCK. AND PEOPLE'S REASONING TO WHY BOTH ARE SIMILAR ARE AS FOLLOWS

    *These bands are awesome
    *I like both bands, that's why they're similar
    *They both come on the rock radio station

    Yeah, bands coming on the same radio station...that's so similar. This now makes Led Zeppelin similar to Journey...SO SIMILAR...CAUSE I HEARD STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN ON THE SAME STATION AS SEPARATE WAYS...SO SIMILAR

    My god, rapper Nas is very similar to Soulja Boy, cuz my rap station played Nas and Soulja Boy back-to-back.


    This is pathetic. If you think a band is similar because you like both...you deserve to have your music license revoked. Learn what makes bands similar before you make another word on music.

    #6 Papa Roach

    CUT MY LYFE INTO PECES...DIS IS MAI LHAST REZART...no

    Maybe they had a few punk influences on their actual albums, but no. It's either nu metal, alternative metal, alternative rock, hard rock, and post-grunge...and the one song I know that's closest to punk rock (...To Be Loved) isn't even similar to Rise Against...it's more in line with modern "post-hardcore" acts...I'm serious...it is...AND DON'T GET ME STARTED ON Time Is Running Out...

    Yeah, not even close

    #7 Breaking Benjamin - Same as Three Days Grace, only with more nu metal influences...closest song to punk rock styling is Ladybug, but that's more to me. Sorry...not similar.

    #8 Bullet for My Valentine - Ahh yeah....their songs have similar tempo to Rise Against so they must be similar.





    HELL NO!!!



    Keep the metal stuff away from the punk rock stuff...there are too many stylings in BFMV (and Avenged Sevenfold while we are at it...of course also not similar to Rise Against)...yeah, FUCK OFF FROM RISE AGAINST SIMILAR ARTISTS PLEASE!!

    #9 Zebrahead - Well, I'm not sure...I only heard one song, and it was their take of His World from the failed Sonic the Hedgehog 06 video game...sounded punk rock...but, I will wait

    #10 Strike Anywhere - So 9 artists down, it took us this long to find an artist that does both punk rock and melodic hardcore...it's just sad. No offense to Billy Talent, Offspring, Sum 41, and Anti-Flag, but this is really the top similar artist to Rise Against.

    #11 A Day to Remember - I'm not even going to try this one...pop punk/metalcore hybrid...doesn't help that I'm unfamiliar with them. I'll wait on this one.

    #12 Disturbed - Nu metal? Alternative metal? Moved into heavy metal and hard rock after The Sickness. GET OUT OF MY SIMILAR ARTISTS!!!!

    #13 Story of the Year - not really...all I hear is post-hardcore, post-hardcore, and...post-hardcore/screamo influences.

    #14 Bad Religion - As said above, I got into them several years after Rise Against...they were doing melodic hardcore for a while...always political...yes, super similar.

    #15 Lostprophets - yeah, maybe they utilize post-hardcore/punk rock influences on songs, like The New Transmission, but that's as far as it go for a band starting in...*sighs*

    NU METAL TO ALTERNATIVE METAL TO ALTERNATIVE ROCK TO POP PUNK TO ALTERNATIVE POP ROCK...BLABLABLAA

    GET OUT!!

    #16 Nickelback - FUCK OFF

    #17 Yellowcard - much poppier than Rise Against...but still more punkier than Disturbed and Three Days Grace...some songs are closer to punk rock (or has enough influences but still pop punk), while others are standard alternative pop rock...partial.

    #18 3 Doors Down - Same as Three Days Grace, but remove nu metal and alternative metal and add in more post-grunge/hard rock and southern rock.

    #19 Skillet

    First off, my review of Monster by Three Days Grace

    http://rateyourmusic.com/release/single/skillet/monster_f2/

    Next, take Three Days Grace and add Jesus to the blurb...

    I think you know what the answer is

    #20 Atreyu - NO MELODIC HARDCORE INFLUENCES...FUCK OFF!


    So there you have it...after going through the top 20, we are left with these bands:

    *Anti-Flag
    *Bad Religion
    *Billy Talent
    *Strike Anywhere
    *Sum 41
    *The Offspring
    *Yellowcard

    7 out of 20...

    That's pathetic. Nickelback being similar to Rise Against is a fucking disgrace...tell Nickelback to write fast-paced songs and ditch all hard rock and glam metal and pop rock influences they may have picked up and focus on punk chords instead. FYI, I've also seen Nickelback on Metallica's similar artists (currently on page 8... http://www.last.fm/music/Metallica/+similar?page=8 , apparently, page suggests RHCP being similar to them...).

    Apparently, Pendulum is listed as being "high" similarity to Rise Against...page 4...I'm serious.

    And because of mis-information like this, people then assume they are similar (pandora, NEVER RECOMMEND NIRVANA ON MY METALLICA STATION OR TOOL ON MY PANTERA STATION). These people need to do research.

    Also, bands being similar because they are both bands is bad. By this logic, Red Hot Chili Peppers are similar to Pink Floyd cause both are rock bands...if you think this is similar, hand in your music license now.


    I'm done raging...apparently, bands like Strung Out, Pennywise, Ignite, Lagwagon are closer to similartiy than 3/4 of the top 20.



    I do not hate all of the top 20 bands/artists listed above...bands like Breaking Benjamin, Disturbed, Lostprophets, as well as a few songs by Papa Roach, 3 Doors Down, and Bullet For My Valentine are all in my music profile and I enjoy listening to them time after time. It's just that I'm heavily offended by what people claim to be similar music to Rise Against.
  • No, YOU AREN'T GONNA GO FAR KID!!!

    6 jul 2012, 04:05

    I haven’t written a journal entry in a while. Had ideas of stuff to write, but was too lazy, doing other things…like chilling out to new releases by Linkin Park, Slash, and The Offspring while preparing for the AOTY by Nas.

    But around May, something…got me going in the wrong direction. When these bands are ready to release new stuff, I usually prep myself by listening to all of their songs and watching their music videos online, especially on youtube. So, with Days Go By coming soon for the Offspring, I started popping through their hits on youtube…Self Esteem, The Kids Aren’t Alright, Hammerhead, Bad Habit, Gone Away…eventually I’d hit across their most recent popular hit “You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid”.



    Fun song, not really in my top 10 for The Offspring.

    Now, sometimes though (actually all the time), people learn bout these songs and bands from other media. An appearance on a TV show, movie, video game soundtrack (THROUGH THE FIRE AND THE FLAAAAAAAME WE CARRY..um, sorry), silly flash animation, commercials, etc… Let’s face it, we all do. When that one phone commercial used the song We Are All Made of Stars by Moby, I looked it up…I just did. Long-time fans may get pissed off, but others might be introduced to new music they never heard off. If I were to tell you how I got into Depeche Mode, you’d be laughing cause it’s quite stupid (a silly ytmnd site with the former BK mascot “THE KING” photoshopped on Dave Gahan’s head in the Enjoy the Silence music video {http://kingsilence.ytmnd.com/}). Whatever way, thanks to the internet, we’re able to find these songs and stuff much easily.

    Some people do get into music cause of fan-made music videos. These songs might be set to clips of a movie, video game, cartoon, and anime. Such videos involving cartoons, anime, and video games may be denoted as “AMVs” (usually referring to animes, but can include the other 2). And if some are good, well..they become well-praised. Take a look at the first amv folks:



    This is now the official music video to Daytona 500 by east-coast rapper Ghostface Killah…set to scenes from the classic anime speed racer. It’s considered the first amv ever to become popular (and it’s not a silly Linkin Park or Three Days Grace song either…LOL).

    So where am I headed? Yes. Very rarely are the actual songs “altered” or “remixed”, usually for the most part for hilarity purposes. And what about You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid? Well. It involves a cartoon that has meme-like status on the internets…a cartoon who’s intended audience was overtaken for another least-expected audience. A cartoon who’s popularity among this audience led to a insanely rapidly-growing culture. This cartoon…is Spongebob Squarepants.




    Yeah, that was failed humor.

    Anyways, the cartoon in question is My Little Pony…well the current iteration…called My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, and this strange fanbase, known as the bronies. Because the creators of the show decided not to enter into copyright infringement campaigns, the number of remixes and fan media for the show has increased by a lot and rapidly…fanart, fanfiction, remixers, Skyrim/TF2 mods…and yes…the AMVs…often known as PMVs (pony music videos)…one of which involves…THIS:



    You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid. AMV…well, there’s 500 of them for different cartoons and movies and video games, but it’s this one. The one that’s causing havoc. This one. It’s almost at 5 million views on youtube. The only reason an AMV should have million views is if it is the only one available for a popular song…or a comedy joke (aka, Crank Dat to any “kiddy” cartoons).



    Here comes my latest rage. The comments section here are full of bronies…ton of them. And some of them…well… IT’S NOTHING BUT PEOPLE SPAMMING “THUMBS UP FOR PONIES”, “PONYPONYPONY”, “RAINBOW DASH BROUGHT ME HERE! THUMBS UP PLZ!”. And then the worst part where they arrive to “bash” the original video in favor of their sped up version…a few claiming that the original is a cover of the altered version...one that can be altered in audacity itself. And then there are people like me who are big fans of The Offspring who well…got pissed off. Upon seeing a top rated comment, I got into a war of words with a brony This was the exchange (keeping the brony unidentified):

    *Unnamed brony:Thumbs ip if Rainbow Dash brought you here (36 thumbs up, top comment)
    *Me:KEEP THOSE DAMN PONIES AWAY FROM MY OFFSPRING!!!
    *Unnamed brony:NEVER!!!!!!!!!!
    *Me:NO U!
    *Unnamed brony:Y U SHUTTA THE HELL UP!
    *Me:Make me...Offspring don't need no stinkin' ponies
    *Unnamed brony:PONIES ARE AWESOME.
    *Me: Put something like blink-182 with the ponies, NOT THE FUCKING OFFSPRING!!!

    As you can guess, a literal war of words upon hearing this. Me myself had went from a regular gamefaqs poster to a lurker with an now unknown account that rarely posts…just lurks (this was after a previous maplerage that I told you about). I’d already knew about the internet following behind the show, but today was the day I would learn just how far their reach was…and when I collided with their reach, this happened.

    Eventually, this brony called up his buddies who proceeded to vote my comment into oblivion. Well, 2 months have passed since that incident and I’ve changed much now since deciding to research their culture (YES, I KNOW MORE NOW ABOUT THE MEME...I DON'T NEED TO BE EDUCATED ON THIS PART), but it still doesn’t change the fact that the spam continues to fall. And people continue to claim that Rainbow Dash’s (the character in question if you didn't figure it out) version is better than the Offspring. Some also criticized the music video (which actually is a mixed reaction among Offspring fans) and claimed to stay with their AMV (or PMV). But the amount of spam, trolling, and dumbness from that small group of bronies pissed me off.

    I DON’T FUCKING CARE IF YOU CAME HERE FROM AN AMV OR NOT, JUST GET IT IN YOUR HEAD THAT THE VERSION IN THE AMV IS SIMPLY THIS FUCKING SONG SPED UP WITH A HIGH PITCH! IT’S NOT A REMIX! A LOT OF PEOPLE TRY DOING THIS TO KEEP THEIR SONGS FROM BEING TAKEN DOWN. YOU MEAN TO TELL ME THAT ALTERING A SONG THAT MUCH IS ENOUGH TO MAKE IT FUCKING BETTER??? I know what you’re gonna tell me now:





    I don’t care…at least be smart when giving your opinion. And don’t fucking spam it on the song’s page like you’re found god. And seriously, you mean to tell me you only heard this song now? It was a major radio hit when it came out…it’s certified gold in the U.S. That’s something really rare with rock songs these days (to get even gold certification in the U.S. for rock songs, it must either get on top 40/ac radio OR stay in the top 10 rock songs for a really really really long time). It should at least well-known by now.

    Bottom line: Stop spamming/circle-jerking videos. If you found it from a TV show or video game or movie or something, that’s cool. If you found it from a silly internet flash video or a guy’s talk show, that’s cool. If you found it in a trailer to a movie, that’s cool. Found it in a commercial, cool too. Browsed through an anime music video and found it, it’s good. But don’t circle-jerk and mass spam a video all over with narcissistic comments like in the case of You’re Gonna Go Far Kid, that’s no good.

    That was like my first time annoyed on the internet over a freakin’ youtube. Chances are that Black Ops 2 launch trailer will include something I listen to (please don’t rape No Church in the Wild…please don’t), and if that happens, I’ll have to deal with more n00bs for a long time.

    Sorry if I pissed off anyone...if you are the sane brony who doesn't spam and stuff, I'm not directing this at you. I'm just directing this at those that spam like crazy. I am also not an anti-brony too so do not direct anger at me for this
  • What's up with maplejet - 2/13/2012

    14 feb 2012, 05:50

    A month has passed since my last entry. Still working on the similar artists formula, but the program I'm running to test the formula has slowed down, so I'm gonna make some changes to the code and re-look at the formula. That will be discussed later. But let me discuss what is on my mind.

    SUPER BOWL DEJA VU
    Yeah, last week, was the Super Bowl...and another halftime guest that basically combined the flaws from the last 2 Super Bowls together (outdated The Who and the top 40-friendly Black Eyed Peas). It was Madonna, but to be honest, it wasn't really a disaster like last year. Not bad, but we need to start getting Pearl Jam, Foo Fighters, Muse and other 90s-2000s rock bands now.

    But the main think I want to vent about were...the commercials. Usually the best part of the Super Bowl...this year, they all came out flat. Sad TBH. The beer commercials are usually the funniest ads...none of them were funny. And some ad campaigns just need to stop...godaddy, Etrade, you get the point.

    LAMB OF GOD > YOU

    That's right, Lamb of God just release a badass album to start 2012 up with some quality groove metal (ignore the naysayers/neckbeard). First album in a longtime that I cranked up non-stop. To be quick to the point, Resolution sees a return back to the -influenced (but not 100% metalcore) sound seen on Ashes Of The Wake and Sacrament. A lot of standouts and unique songs...the one that grabbed my attention was new territory for LoG...known as Insurrection, where Randy Blythe actually utilize clean singing vocals on the first verse...pretty cool sound.

    The intro/track 2 combination of Straight For The Sun / Desolation also delivers (just like Wrath's The Passing / In Your Words). Still 2012's got a long way to go, and anything can dethrone Resolution as my favorite album of 2012 (screw the naysayers and neckbeards).

    If you're a fan of the David Lee Roth era of Van Halen, be sure to check out VH's new album A Different Kind Of Truth, which feels like stuff straight from the DLR era in the early 80s. Many of the songs on ADKoT were taken from some early VH work before the Ran with the Devil and hit it big. Eddie Van Halen provides a ton of awesome guitar riffs and solo'ing too. I'm probably gonna give several more listens of this album though. Even if it's not another Van Halen or 1984 or Fair Warning, fans of VH will enjoy it.

    WAIT, why did I watch the grammies again

    Yeah, I was trying to boycott these grammies, but unfortunately, everyone at home wanted to watch it...with nothing else to do Sunday night, I had no choice but to watch a show that didn't really care about music.

    There were only two things I cared about and both did their jobs...Foo Fighters swept the rock awards as expected, in the process winning for best hard rock / metal performance...pissing off the snobby prog-head fanbase known as Dream Theater. The award said Hard Rock / Metal...not Metal only. And the song that won that award...none other than White Limo. Sorry DT fans, but even if the award was split as metal and hard rock separately, you still wouldn't win...the Grammies love to choose the old geezer established act...Megadeth would have taken best metal performance...and forget 2013 as long as Metallica releases an album. BTW, the cheapo/silly music video for White Limo features Lemmy of Motorhead driving a white limo with the band members hopping on for some cheesy and hillarious shit.

    But I'll be honest, Wasting Light by the Foo Fighters had so much things going. To me, it was a celebration of rock music...recorded in a garage in analog. No computers. The recording process lasted several weeks with a song focused one at a time. While Nickelback relied on pro tools and FL studio for the infamous Dark Horse, the Foos recorded their album old fashion. This is what separates them from every single modern post-grunge band out there today.

    And how bout Dave Grohl wearing that Slayer t-shirt...he's really a metalhead, you know that...right? I was hoping for the Foos to topple Adele...but they didn't come any close.

    The other album was Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy...the album that pretty much signals a turning point for Kanye after interupting our buddy Taylor Swift and promoting Beyonce's NWO illuminati..ahem...music video. Sorry bout that. It was a great album (though I still like Late Registration better...now barely by a hair though). What more do you want, great sampling, some awesome guests (Raekwon's verse rocked), and the perfect choice of a single to get this album platinum. And critics loved it...the hipster gathering site known as pitchfork gave this a 10/10...but I already dug Kanye West before those guys gave a 10/10.

    Mass critical praise, great sales, took home 3 Grammies in the hip-hop category, shutting down the Young Money express. In addition, Kanye West and Jay-Z also won for best hip-hop performance with Otis. Great night for Kanye overall...4 awards. And possibly AOTY right?

    If you read my entry on the Grammies...you know the rest.



    Snubbed....what many believe could be an influential album to music in the future...snubbed. In it's place were two albums by Bruno Mars and Rihanna that had no reason occupying those slots. Two pop albums that weren't fully well recieved...at least not compared to Kanye. How could anyone snub Kanye like this? And guess what...both Hova and Yeezy didn't show up for the grammies. Hova's got to be with Beyonce and their new satani...I mean, baby. Fatherhood's here for Jigga. Gotta care about him.

    But Kanye...I think it's obvious why he didn't show up. He'll probably deny it, but...yeah...why even show respect to a show that fails to respect your art...and hip-hop as a whole. Hip-hop has never been recognized by the show...only two albums won album of the year...and both aren't pure hip-hop albums (Lauryn Hill's is more R&B alligned while Outkast's second half of their AOTY was more funk/R&B based.

    As for the performances, well, we know Bruce Springsteen and Paul McCartney would dominate their performances. As did the Foo Fighters (rumors indicated that Chris Brown and Lil Wayne would join in with the Foos for a performance...that was misred though as the Foos performed instead with deadmau5).

    As for Nicki Minaj...I'm just going to say "WTF" and move on. And there was Adele eating every single award in her path...the media's going to go crazy over her.

    But yeah, that's the grammys for you. They're in a bad hole now and even though the Foos and Kanye won big, everything else is a blur...hip-hop is invisible to the grammies.

    (BTW, before you complain about the hard rock/metal performance, note that Metallica, Slayer, Judas Priest, Motorhead, Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath, Tool, Rage Against the Machine, AC/DC have won either Hard Rock or Metal performances at the grammies at least once. They know these bands exist at least. Oh...Nickelback still doesn't have a grammy :P




    But, one of the reasons that people watched the grammies was not about the award, but another music icon passing away. whiteny houston died on Friday with news becoming official the next day. It's a tragic story of how someone with a magnificient voice could sucummb to drug use and have her career ruined later. Now, I never listened to her...though my mother did back in the 80s, so she wanted to watch the Grammies to see what tribute they would do. Whitney sang the national anthem in Super Bowl 25...which is widely considered to be one of the best renditions of the anthem...probably the only thing from that Super Bowl I want to remember (Bills fan here :( ). It's tough though. A lot of artists I listen to have suffered band members dying of drug overdose/addiction. The Rev from Avenged Sevenfold, Mike Starr from Alice in Chains. It's tough to get sober from drug addiction, and sometimes the drugs take you right back in.

    Even though I wasn't a big listener of her, R.I.P. Whitey Houston.




    Final words, lot of new albums coming out this year, and I'm hoping they'll be awesome. Jesse Leach is back with Killswitch Engage now...hoping their new album makes up for the flawed s/t album in 2009. Soundgarden should be finally ready to release some awesome shit. Perhaps Tool will release their long overdue record.

    That's all.
  • Revamping the similar artists formula, Part II

    2 jan 2012, 05:27

    Last Saturday, I discussed the issues with the current similar artist formula...especially Metallica being top 10 in similarity with The Offspring (like what?).

    Well, since then, I put my programming skills to work and well, I built a little program to test to see it would work with other artists. Results were noticed on several bands/artists as their similar artists over went a make over. However, it did lead to new problems as I tried testing it out super-mainstream acts including our favorite band...Radiohead.


    Rage Against the Machine showed up as a similar artist.


    ...well, apparently. Radiohead's top 250 similar artists currently are all over the place in random genres. A bigger batch of similar artists would be needed to get the best results, but the question is...is my new formula better. I'm going to show you some examples of artists top 25 similar artists...before, and after. You guys make the decision.


    Oh, you don't remember the formula? Very well...time for a quick summary
    *First, grab all 250 similar artists for Artist A. Obtain them in the given order.
    *Next, for each similar artist starting with the one with the highest original rank, look at the first 3 tag and count how many of the tags are similar to the tags in Artist A. Resort based on this. You should end up with 4 groups starting from top (matches all 3 tags, matches 2 tags, matches 1 tag, matches no tags)
    *Next, break the ties by resorting each group based on matches among the first 4 tags (which will spawn even more groups)
    *Then finally, re-sort again, this time on the top 5 tags. If there are still ties, break the ties based on their original rank.


    It's a lot of technical and algorithm stuff that is complicated for the average user, so I won't go that deep. See my example in the first journal entry here for an example with The Offspring (though I work a little backwards here).

    Also, I have banned several tags...here are some of them
    *Tags that are the same as the artist - not all have been banned, but the common ones have been (ex: for Red Hot Chili Peppers). These tags simply group together projects involving members of a band...but really, they may not have the same style.
    *Tags referring to geographical locations..., , , . The geographical location doesn't make sense at all. I haven't gotten into geo-genre tags much yet as they may require research before banning (some countries may have a genre as a specific style).
    *Decade tags. Similar artists do not have to reside in the same decade. If there's a Led Zeppelin clone playing the exact same style of music today that Zep played in the 60s and 70s, then perhaps they should be similar.
    *Nonsense tags...you pretty much know them..., , , , ....they don't reflect a genre or style
    *The tag. To be honest, this tag was holding a lot of stuff back, especially those that are also alternative rock. This tag is incredibly abused as well to hell, so I dropped that tag. Still no decision on the tag...I'll have to run a few more tests through different artists to make that decision.



    So there you go...the banned tags. I'll go through several examples...these are the top 20 artists, before and after.


    ARTIST #1: RADIOHEAD

    CURRENT ON LAST.FM:
    Thom Yorke
    Johnny Greenwood
    Sigur Rós
    Portishead
    Blur

    Muse
    Modeselektor
    Arcade Fire
    Beck
    Interpol

    Grizzly Bear
    Björk
    The National
    Coldplay
    Placebo

    Kasabian
    Joy Division
    Massive Attack
    Pink Floyd
    The Horrors

    BASED ON NEW FORMULA:
    #1 Placebo
    #2 Pixies
    #3 R.E.M.
    #4 The White Stripes
    #5 Incubus
    #6 Weezer
    #7 Blur
    #8 Coldplay
    #9 Kasabian
    #10 Arctic Monkeys

    #11 Oasis
    #12 The Verve
    #13 The Last Shadow Puppets
    #14 Suede
    #15 Primal Scream
    #16 Manic Street Preachers
    #17 Muse
    #18 Arcade Fire
    #19 The National
    #20 The Strokes

    I'm not sure about both lists. Radiohead seems to really have only one similar artist...themselves. But which one is closest?


    Lets do another punk rock band other than The Offspring. How about Rise Against

    CURRENTLY ON LAST.FM

    Sum 41
    Billy Talent
    Anti-Flag
    Zebrahead
    A Day to Remember

    Strike Anywhere
    The Offspring
    Breaking Benjamin
    Three Days Grace
    Bullet for My Valentine

    Story of the Year
    Papa Roach
    Silverstein
    Yellowcard
    Bad Religion

    Nickelback
    3 Doors Down
    Lostprophets
    Millencollin
    Disturbed

    Ugh...I could just puke to hell if I'm told most of these bands are similar...

    PROPOSED FORMULA:
    #1 Strung Out
    #2 Nations Afire
    #3 A Wilhelm Scream
    #4 Last of the Believers
    #5 Good Riddance

    #6 Only Crime
    #7 88 Fingers Louie
    #8 Satanic Surfers
    #9 Pulley
    #10 Much The Same

    #11 Strike Anywhere
    #12 Pennywise
    #13 Bad Religion
    #14 Propagandhi
    #15 No Fun At All

    #16 H2O
    #17 Polar Bear Club
    #18 AFI
    #19 No Use For A Name
    #20 Lagwagon

    Not only has every single non-punk rock band has been removed from the current list, but even mainstream punk rock bands like Sum 41 and The Offspring are also gone. The result? More melodic hardcore bands in the top 20. Strung Out is now the most similar. Sum 41 and The Offspring show up between #21-30. And Nickelback? A long way down...at 139. This is probably the main reason why the tag was not removed.



    So, what about metal? How bout some Metallica?

    Megadeth
    Slayer
    Anthrax
    Iron Maiden
    Pantera

    AC/DC
    Black Sabbath
    System of a Down
    Guns N' Roses
    Motörhead

    Lou Reed & Metallica
    Machine Head
    Ozzy Osbourne
    Slipknot
    Sepultura

    Trivium
    Testament
    Avenged Sevenfold
    The Offspring
    Exodus

    WHAT THE FUCK IS THE OFFSPRING DOING HERE? Literally. Well, for the most part, it looks OK with Megadeth, Slayer, and Anthrax on top first but...AC/DC, GNR...they sure may have been influenced by them, but would you really call them similar to Metallica? Would anyone even consider Slipknot or SOAD similar to Metallica either? Avenged Sevenfold?

    Let's see what our new formula has spawned:

    #1 MD.45
    #2 Black Tide
    #3 Megadeth
    #4 Anthrax
    #5 Testament

    #6 Acid Drinkers
    #7 Kat
    #8 Turbo
    #9 Iron Maiden
    #10 Black Sabbath

    #11 Motörhead
    #12 Ozzy Osbourne
    #13 Black Label Society
    #14 Dio
    #15 Bruce Dickinson

    #16 TSA
    #17 Lordi
    #18 Danzig
    #19 Steve Ouimette
    #20 Slayer


    Hmm...kind of strange here. Slayer actually dropped while Testament on the other hand arised. Now...MD.45 comes up #1...I dunno, many claim it's punk rock, but their top tags are thrash. But what the fuck are Acid Drinkers, Kat and Turbo? They're thrash metal bands from Poland. Both shared thrash metal and heavy metal tags with Metallica, thus the high ranking since thrash metal and heavy metal are also among Metallica's top tags too.

    Slayer only shared two tags (thrash metal, heavy metal) while the Polish metal bands shared all 3 (since was banned due to location). It's quite interesting to be honest. Similar artists are supposed to get us into new artists. Not sure if they're good or not, but perhaps you might wanna give a spin to those artists.



    What bout hip-hop? Let's take a random hip-hop artist....ok, Kanye West (I had to ban the tag in order to get similar artists).

    CURRENT:
    Jay-Z
    Jay-Z & Kanye West
    The Throne
    Kid Cudi
    Big Sean

    Lupe Fiasco
    j.cole
    Drake
    Pusha T
    Common

    Wale
    The Weeknd
    Kendrick Lamar
    Mr Hudson
    Consequence

    The Game
    Rick Ross
    Frank Ocean
    N*E*R*D
    Outkast


    I dunno...but I kind of feel most of the similar artist are affiliated in some way to G.O.O.D. Music.


    NEW FORMULA:
    #1 Diddy - Dirty Money
    #2 Chris Brown
    #3 Nelly
    #4 Nicki Minaj
    #5 Timbaland

    #6 Pharrell
    #7 Fonzworth Bentley
    #8 R. Kelly & Jay-Z
    #9 Mase
    #10 Puff Daddy & The Family

    #11 Drake
    #12 T-pain
    #13 P. Diddy
    #14 Diddy
    #15 Twista

    #16 Bow Wow
    #17 Chris Brown & Tyga
    #18 Will Smith
    #19 Usher
    #20 R. Kelly

    Umm...is it just me or did this get a little more on the poppy/rnb side (well Kanye did do more poppy stuff on the last 2 record). LOL at the different version of the guy known as Diddy on there (hip-hop, rap rnb, pop, soul were the top tags for Kanye West after other tags were dumped...including hip hop (duplicate tag for hip-hop), kanye west (for obvious reasons) and...GAY FISH. TBH, most people tend to consider Kanye as a good musician rather than an MC.


    One more example. I have also banned the because it referred to a radio format rather than a genre. One band I tested was Queen:

    Freddie Mercury
    Brian May
    Roger Taylor
    Queen + Paul Rodgers
    Freddie Mercury & Montserrat Caballé

    The Cross
    Deep Purple
    Queen & David Bowie
    Led Zeppelin
    Pink Floyd

    Electric Light Orchestra
    The Who
    The Beatles
    Scorpions
    Kiss

    Black Sabbath
    Genesis
    David Bowie
    AC/DC
    Aerosmith


    Well...most of the top 10 consists of random Queen side projects. But do they play the same exact style...or even have a good discography to choose from? Queen & David Bowie only has one song of existence! And the next 10 artists...hmm...feels like Queen takes in a bit of those bands, but they aren't even similar to each other. What bout this new formula?

    #1 Slade
    #2 Sweet
    #3 Suzi Quatro
    #4 Queen + Paul Rodgers
    #5 Kiss
    #6 The Darkness
    #7 Mott the Hoople
    #8 Styx
    #9 Foreigner
    #10 Freddie Mercury

    #11 Roger Taylor
    #12 David Bowie
    #13 Alice Cooper
    #14 Bon Jovi
    #15 Heart
    #16 Jon Bon Jovi
    #17 L.A. Guns
    #18 Journey
    #19 Deep Purple
    #20 Led Zeppelin

    Well, most of the original British Invasion is gone...some of those arena rock bands though are now in (Styx, Foreigner, and Journey to be specific)...Alice Cooper is in, and he's considered glam rock which Queen sometimes goes into...not bad. Most of the Queen side projects are gone, and AC/DC and Aerosmith seems to belong somewhere else (got to go outside the top 30 to find them). The top band is Slade...based on their last.fm page, they seem to also incorporate glam rock and hard rock together. Same with Sweet as well. Remember Queen still has hard rock influences to their sound as well, which is why not all hard rock band on the original list are gone. Seems to feel like a better list IMO, but what about you?


    Well, I'm prolly going to go through more artists and search for more tags. Perhaps I could show you some more examples as well from other genres. It should be known that not all similar artists formulas are perfect. And there will always be artists that aren't similar at all.

    Remember, I'm only able to resort the original top 250 similar artists. If there are some that are clearly similar to the given artist, but not in that artist's top 250 similar artists, it may not be caught. IMO, this formula is better applied over a similar artist pool of more than 250...probably a lot more artists.

    So take a look and pass me some feedback...whether it be on a formula, tags to include, and perhaps ask me for a few examples.
  • Revamping the similar artists formula.

    25 dec 2011, 19:45

    As you've noticed the last several years, similar artists for bands/artists have gotten worse and more unreasonable. Especially if you keep reading on and on through the top similar artists for each artist. The one that has been baffling me for a while is The Offspring, a punk rock band that's not extreme or (though they do have influences and sounds at times). In fact, as of 12/25/2011, these are their top 50 similar artists in order:

    Sum 41
    Rise Against
    Bad Religion
    Billy Talent
    Pennywise
    Metallica
    Green Day
    blink-182
    Zebrahead
    Millencollin

    AC/DC
    Nickelback
    Papa Roach
    System of a Down
    Red Hot Chili Peppers
    Disturbed
    Anti-Flag
    Rage Against the Machine
    NOFX
    Godsmack

    Bloodhound Gang
    Limp Bizkit
    3 Doors Down
    Rancid
    Farben Lehre
    Slipknot
    Static-X
    Nirvana
    Korn
    Dropkick Murphys

    Ramones
    Iron Maiden
    Audioslave
    Goldfinger
    Rammstein
    Drowning Pool
    Pidżama Porno
    Bullet for My Valentine
    DragonForce
    Rob Zombie

    Bowling for Soup
    P.O.D.
    Dope
    Good Charlotte
    Guano Apes
    Flogging Molly
    Tenacious D
    Foo Fighters
    Three Days Grace
    AFI


    You guys can puke now. The current formula is based on what people of Offspring listen to more often. But seriously...we know this. If one person listens to two bands, those two bands aren't necessarily similar...especially The Offspring to Metallica. The Offspring to Nickelback. The Offspring to AC/DC (seriously...). The Offspring to System of a Down...The Offspring to Disturbed and Godsmack (seriously...?) The Offspring to Slipknot, KoRn, and Limp Bizkit (when has The Offspring ever been nu metal?). And worse yet, The Offspring to Iron Maiden, Rammstein, Bullet For My Valentine, DragonForce, Rob Zombie...are we supposed to believe that The Offspring is a heavy metal band?

    Anyone should know that this method isn't the best way to find a similar artist. It's not. Simple as follows. A topic on the forums discussed that and some people suggested that the bands/artists be determined by tag clouds. That could work, but a few believe that there could be problems, especially when taking the whole tag cloud as a whole and seeing a ton of hard rock and alternative bands become similar to the one artist (The Offspring in this case).




    Actually, there is another way I've been looking at, and it was a waste of several hours.

    What if we took the current list and re-sorted it based on just the top 5 tags, taking into account the order of the tags. Of course there are questionable tags like , , and for some reason, very frequently and (appears that The Offspring has a huge following in Poland), but for now, let's leave them here (already, the infamous tag was banned from the tag cloud).

    This is what I did...I grabbed the top 5 tags for every single band and resorted the list based on how many tags a band/artist shared those tags. Those that shared all 5 tags (in this case, , , , , ) came on the top followed by those that shared 4, then 3, and then 0. Here's how the top 20 now looked like:

    SHARED ALL 5 TAGS
    Billy Talent
    Hoobastank
    Pezz
    Killradio
    Alien Ant Farm
    Unwritten Law

    SHARED ONLY 4 TAGS (missing tag in paranthesis)
    Sum 41 (had , missing alternative rock)
    Bad Religion (had , missing alternative rock)
    Green Day (had pop punk, missing alternative rock)
    blink-182 (had pop punk, missing alternative rock)
    Bloodhound Gang (had , missing punk rock)
    Pidżama Porno (had , missing alternative rock)
    Bowling For Soup (had pop punk, missing alternative rock)
    Good Charlotte (had pop punk, missing alternative rock)
    AFI (had emo, missing alternative rock)
    SR-71 (had pop punk, missing alternative rock)
    Social Distortion (had rockabilly, missing alternative rock)
    No Use For a Name (had pop punk, missing alternative rock)
    +44 (had pop punk, missing alternative rock)
    Strachy Na Lachy (had polish, missing punk)


    As you can notice now, all of those metal and hard rock bands like Metallica, AC/DC, Nickelback, System of a Down, Disturbed and Godsmack....GONE from the top 20...actually they didn't even break the top 30 as well. What was more disturbing though was the high number of bands that didn't even share a single tag with The Offspring. These are some of the bands that you could hear when listening to The Offspring similar artists radio, and grab a bucket, you're about to puke hard...no, Justin Bieber is not there, but still...


    Bullet For My Valentine
    DragonForce
    In Flames
    Pantera
    The Prodigy
    Apocalyptica
    Slayer
    Korpiklaani
    Sabaton
    Children of Bodom
    Nightwish
    Sonata Arctica
    Hammerfall
    Clawfinger
    Soulfly
    Hollywood Undead
    Megadeth
    All That Remains
    Pendulum
    Trivium
    Blind Guardian
    Volbeat
    Five Finger Death Punch
    Vavamuffin
    Sepultura
    Lacuna Coil
    As I Lay Dying
    Machine Head
    Anthrax
    Spineshank
    Judas Priest
    Hunter
    Alestorm
    Eluveitie
    Sonic Syndicate
    Eminem
    A Day to Remember
    Jelonek
    Soilwork
    Hatebreed
    Within Temptation
    Fatboy Slim
    Frontside
    Massacration
    Alley Life


    Take a look guys...enjoy listening to all that metalcore, symphonic metal, power metal, heavy metal, electronica, nu metal, thrash metal, melodic death metal, and hip-hop stuff. According to last.fm right now, they are really similar artists to The Offspring (actually, all of them except for DF and BFMV come up as medium to low similarity to The Offspring). But seriously, a band that doesn't even share any of the top 5 tags with another band/artist has no reason even being on a list with that band. And there's literally a common thread with the bands/artists listed above. Most of them are pure metal to the point they don't even have a tag (I suspect Priest would get one if classic rock was barred though). Others like The Prodigy or Eminem are from electronica and hip-hop genres...and..really...I can't see a similarity with those bands to begin with.


    So there...we managed to filter in bands that are similar...but it's not over yet. Let's now resort the list again, but this time, only compare the top 4 tags for all artists/bands. Tiebreakers for this sort will be

    1). Number of tags shared when maximum 5 tags are used...
    2). Their original ranking on the old formula, higher goes first


    After the sort, the top 20 looks even more different:

    Pezz
    Killradio
    Billy Talent
    Hoobastank
    Alien Ant Farm

    Unwritten Law
    Sum 41
    Bad Religion
    Green Day
    blink-182

    Bloodhound Gang
    Bowling For Soup
    Good Charlotte
    AFI
    Social Distortion

    No Use For a Name
    +44
    Sugarcult
    The Distillers
    Autopilot Off


    Well for the most part, the ordering has changed here. Some other bands now moved into the top 20 as there's more of a focus on the top 4 tags.

    Last but not least, I repeated the resort again, but only comparing the top 3 tags for all artists/bands using the same tiebreakers as before while adding another tiebreaker that takes greater precedence (basically the number of tags shared when the maximum tags is used at 3...followed by the 2 tiebreaker rules listed above). And here is the final product:


    #1 Killradio
    #2 Billy Talent
    #3 Unwritten Law
    #4 Sum 41
    #5 Green Day
    #6 AFI
    #7 Social Distortion
    #8 Ramones
    #9 Pezz
    #10 Bad Religion
    #11 blink-182
    #12 Bowling For Soup
    #13 Good Charlotte
    #14 No Use For a Name
    #15 +44
    #16 Sugarcult
    #17 The Distillers
    #18 Autopilot Off
    #19 Transplants
    #20 Pennywise


    Now where did Hoobastank and Alien Ant Farm go? Even though they shard all 5 tags as The Offspring, the ordering on both bands was different (rock, alternative rock, alternative, punk rock, punk), while with The Offspring, the ordering was (punk rock, punk, rock, alternative rock, alternative). As a result, the bands only shared 1 tag among the top 3 tags and ended up going below those that had at least 2 of The Offspring's top tags (punk rock, punk, rock).

    As for some of those disputed bands, Nickelback ended up coming in at #69. Much lower on the list, but still quite high as they did share 1 tag among the top 3 (rock). Also, remember we are re-ranking the top 250 bands artists and remember we are already dealing with a good 45 bands that have nothing in common with The Offspring. I do not know whether they strive to get the top 250 bands and cut off from there, or work out some weird formula there, but perhaps maybe they should apply the current formula to get a batch of even more artists, apply the above formula, and then just take the top 250 artists...honestly 250 might be too much...top 200 perhaps? You could see a real shake up on many similar artists lists.

    Many mainstream bands like Metallica, Radiohead, Linkin Park and other bands could see a lot of shake-up too. There are still a few other unresolved issues, like will it actually pick up 100% similar artists? Red Hot Chili Peppers for example has their top tags as rock, alternative, and alternative rock. Didn't some of the bands listed above have those 3 tags as well? Are they really similar? But perhaps it could cut bands that aren't alternative to begin with, like AC/DC, Black Sabbath, etc...

    Another issue is potential abuse of tags. I'm talking about a bunch of wackos attempting to give something like Justin Bieber the now infamous tag (honestly though, 1 tag isn't really going to be enough and even identifying a brutal death metal band that a Justin Bieber fan listens too is going to be real difficult...especially if it doesn't share a pop or something. Moderators can assist with issues like that.

    Also, the removal of tags could have an effect on similar artists. If we remove something like 70s, 80s, swedish, female vocalists, and all those other tags, can we guarantee that the new tags will make things better, or make things worse? What about tags regarding the same thing (alternative is not the same as alternative rock, but hip-hop/hip hop/hiphop? Nu metal/nu-metal? alt-rock/alternative rock?)? Do we merge these tags into one? Or do these duplicates exist because there's no other major tag to classify them as? What about vague tags like "classic rock"? And abused tags like "alternative", "indie"? And bogus tags like "", "", ""? With cases like this, it's all trial and error then, but it's really something that can be done on the go and with the assistance of user feedback.


    There is one more thing I thought of regarding my suggested? Perhaps we could start sorting based on top tag for each artist, then by top 2 tags, then by top 3 tags, and all the way until the top 50th tag or something (and if an artist doesn't have a certain number of tags, TOO BAD :P). But that's something that would take a while to look at.

    Who knows, perhaps someone might create a last.fm widget tool based on this suggestion. But it is clearly a possibility to use instead of the current formula, which guarantees a ton of similar artists that have nothing to do with each other.