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 alternative rock...though that genre is broad. Styles explored by the band include funk rock, pop rock, funk (specifically freaky styley, funk metal (earlier albums), and sometimes, rap rock (aka, rap-like vocals) and psychedelia 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.
--Well, he's the guitarist of RHCP...but I don't think his music is similar to RHCP.
John Frusciante and Josh Klinghoffer
--Well, more RHCP side-projects. But once again, I have no idea if they are similar
--People think they are "similar" because both became popular in the 90s (a la 90s rock), but the Foos branch out to post-grunge/hard rock sounds with grunge roots...stuff that RHCP lacks...so no.
Rage Against the Machine
--Rage utilized funk metal sounds with some rap vocals...possibliy similar
--Same as Foos except pure grunge. I'm going to have to say no.
--Basically a grunge vocalist with the rest of RATM minus Zach...not exactly similar
--Another grunge act that has punk, sludge, and noise rock influences...nope
System of a Down
--Now it really gets bad here...SOAD is alternative metal...and much much heavier than RHCP...really...why would anyone consider either similar?
--The Offspring plays skate punk/punk rock...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.
--Perhaps RHCP was influenced by both Zep and Jimi...but neither of them have funk sounds. Zeppelin was hard rock/blues rock while Jimi brought out the acid rock sound. RHCP primarily has funk sounds to most of their music...and when psychedelic, they ain't acidy...in fact, it's more pop
Alice in Chains
--grunge band that has blatant heavy metal influences...really?
--Definitely similar...the band started as funk metal, just like RHCP. And their alternative rock songs are similar to RHCP's later career.
The White Stripes
The Black Keys
--Both bands are garage rock revival acts that bring in the blues rock...not the funk
--Definitely similar...Jane's Addicition did jump into funk metal sounds at times along with psychedelic sounds.
--Metallica is known for thrashing, not funking.
--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.
--Hard rock, heavy metal influences, blues influences, none present in RHCP
--Band goes electronic most of the times...no
The Jimi Hendrix Experience
--See Jimi Hendrix
Guns N' Roses
--See AC/DC...no funk
--I have no idea who this band is
Queens of the Stone Age
--Stoner/hard rock...heavy at times...NO.
--Another influence...but band is too rooted in art rock/progressive rock...sorry
--Plain ole' punk rock...nope.
--Well they have rap-oriented vocals like RHCP in the 90s...but then comes the nu metal sounds and well...No.
Charlie Brown JR.
--Britpop band...no funk based sounds...I'm going to pass
--Purely rooted in pop punk and later pop rock. No.
--Never listened to them enough times to judge a good enough opinion.
--Hard rock/glam rock...no
--Is RHCP a pure heavy metal? NO
--While Coldplay is primarily alternative rock/pop rock like RHCP's later days, RHCP still sounds hard compared to Coldplay...no.
--Jack White project...assuming it sounds in a similar vein to The White Stripes, I'm going to have to say no.
Kings of Leon
--Standard alternative rock that have southern rock influences...feels too different.
--Just like the other classic rock/hard rock bands...no
Cage the Elephant
--garage rock roots...no
--Perhaps similar as the band has funk sounds, but haven't listened to enough by them to make an opinion
--With LP relying on nu metal, hip-hop, and electronic influences, they're with other scenes. NO.
Faith No More
--Their funk metal days are quite similar..though they went in different directions as the 90s continued
--Standard alternative rock/indie rock...nope
Stone Temple Pilots
--Started as grunge before relying on hard rock...nope
--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
--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.