Thursday, July 9, 2009

Map of the Week-The Music Underground

A few years ago music writer Dorian Lynskey created this map for the Guardian, charting the history of recent western music along Harry Beck's famous London Underground map. Each line represents a musical genre. The more eclectic artists are at the intersections. The Circle Line represents Pop music because it intersects all the other genres.
Of course, it is not possible to do this without leaving out important artists or placing others in debatable locations. In the words of the author: "Pedants, of course, will find flaws. Musical influences are so labyrinthine that any simple equation will be imperfect." Still I can't help but wonder what Wilco has to do with Electronica and Dance or why the late King of Pop Michael Jackson is only on the Soul line.

Some of the article's comments are amusing too such as this one: "The most stereotypically self-indulgent Guardian wank I can think of, bordering on self parody. Smug, London obsessed (and I live in London) nonsense. It's got nothing to do with anything! There's people like, dying and stuff. And where are the Arctic Monkeys, anyway...?"

The full map at low resolution is below. For a detailed .pdf version link to the article from the thumbnail above.


Michael5000 said...

I couldn't possibly top the commenter you quoted.

zebra said...

I love the idea of this, but why don't they have Punk and New Wave as genres? Maybe I missed them but where are Elvis Costello, The Police, the Sex Pistols, Patti Smith and Roxy Music, for instance?

Dug said...

Good point! You'd think a movement that was largely based in London could get some recognition from the London Underground map music historians.