Genre tagging is the bane of my existence, but also an enormous help when I'm looking for something or helping a fan find more artists with a general sound or style they're looking for. My genre splits aren't the most precise, somewhat on purpose. I personally like to hear the slippery spaces between genres that are less clear, so I like my categories to be inclusive of that range.
To quickly search through a genre, check the quick-links in the sidebar's GENRE FILTERS section. You can also click the SEARCH TAGS drop-down menu to find some of the other available tags. The genre options will be in a bracketed format like this [GENRE : Pop/Dance].
Pop (Dance): The most populated tag for obvious reasons. Most of the time this will be choreographed pop music. Upbeat. Something that makes you want to move. That can range from noisy dubstep to a gentle peppy love song. Secondary tags will be the best indication of exactly what you're getting here.
EDM/Synthpop: Potentially there could be perfect overlap between this category and the Pop category. I get a little more specific here to focus on the tracks that have distinctive artificial or synthesized instrumentation. Almost all pop music is going to have elements of synthesizers these days. But this tag is for the stuff where the primary flavor of the sound is EDM and synth. This will range from frantic hardstyle to dreamy futurebass to chill atmosphere.
Rock/Punk: Drum, guitar, bass. Band sound. Rhythms that sound like they came out of physical instruments. Anything like metal or light rock or punk or power ballads. Again, there won't be purity, but it's the primary driving sound.
Rap/Hip Hop: Identifying rap is pretty straightforward. But an enormous amount of bubbly pop songs have a 'rap part' stuck in the bridge or something. This tag is focusing on songs where rap dominates or at least feels in balance with any singing or melody. There are also some pop songs that are screaming 'hip hop beat' so much they belong here even if the rapping is weak or less present.
R&B/Soul: Big category. Lots of range. Baby-making jams or soulful ballads or slowed-down hip hop or blues or borderline gospel.
Ballad: This one is fairly strict. Slower tempo, big vocals, acoustic or orchestral instrumentation. Standards, musical theater, emotional OSTs, etc.
Ballad with a beat: This is where the ballad genre gets leaky. Usually there will be a slow-tempo, strong, vocal melody, but the rest of the instrumentation might veer towards pop or R&B or hip hop or rock or folk. Check those other tags on each post to see what other genres the ballad leans into.
Coffee Shop: Hopefully the name paints a picture. Genre isn't very strict here though acoustic pop dominates. The unifying theme is typically going to be sweet, gentle, breathy, vocals. Nothing too distracting. Relaxing. Don't be surprised to hear rapping in here. The overall feel will be soft, smiling, positive vibes. Light and gentle, regardless of the lyrics or instrumentation.
Duet (Rapper/Singer): Not strictly two artists. It could be more. There will be some balance between a melodic singer and a significant rap part. Think something along the lines of Eminem/Rihanna.
Duet (Singing): Also not strictly two artists. Anything that sounds distinctly like a couple singing together. Two women. Two men. One woman, one man. Something more choral-sounding could go here as well. A handful of singers. You'll hear distinct voices. Elements of call and response. Melodies exchanged like conversation.
Jazz/Doo Wop/Funk: This mess. I'm aware these can be very distinct styles. They get the fewest tags, so I pile them together. In a word, this is 'Motown'. Anything especially jazzy or bluesy or like you heard it in some 60s jingle. Also some bumpin' funk in there for good measure.
80s/Retro Throwback: The 80s sound is very popular, so it dominates. But you could get some Motown feel in here. Or swing. Or funk. Or early 90s hip hop. A track in here will have the strong sense it came from another era.
Trot/Traditional: Trot music is hard to describe. It's the bridge between traditional Korean music and contemporary pop. Warbling affected vocals and... disco? Straight-up traditional stuff, of course. Ballads in the ancient style. I also throw in current pop music that uses traditional instrumentation in any interesting way. I love this category. I don't get to add to it often, but it's always something compelling.
Alt./Genre-fusion: The shared characteristic here is that I listened through the song a few times and found myself incapable of categorizing it in a clear way. Alternative. The weird, extreme, or wandering genres that don't fit anywhere else. This includes the tracks where multiple genres are fused intentionally. For example, a rock song, with a lot of rapping, along with a choreographed pop dance routine. Instead of just piling on ALL THE TAGS, I'll tend to dump them in here. Taking a trip through this list is a guaranteed adventure.
Reggae or Surf: Should be self-explanatory. Probably the most precise categories because they are so clearly identifiable. Reggae or reggaeton is a fairly popular trend blended with EDM, but it has to be very dominant to end up in this tag. I've probably put the occasional ska track in here, too.