The 20 Worst Hipster Bands, According To LA Weekly

The 20 Worst Hipster Bands, According To LA Weekly

LA Weekly published their list of 20 Worst Hipster Bands, which is sure to be the ultimate troll blog post for the next few days. And with any well-thought-out troll comes a heated discussion on the merits of said post. I can bet at least three of these artists land on all of your iPods out there (or whatever device you use to listen to music), so I am sure just about all of you have something to say. Keep in mind the initial text that starts of this article:

Who are these hipsters we see each day in the streets, on our Tumblr feeds, and on the local news? And why are so many in bands? It’s not the mere existence of hipster groups that distresses us — some of our best friends are hipsters, after all — it’s their lemming-like tendency to, if you’ll pardon a mixed metaphor, ape each other.

On its surface hipsterdom seems to be an individuality-grab, but most of today’s 20 and 30-something bands from Silver Lake and Williamsburg sound shockingly similar. They’re all playing variations of retro garage and soul music — or bringing glockenspiels and choirs on incestuous nationwide tours — all the while clad in vintage garb likely infested with lice. We’re not saying that they should be outlawed by, like, Congress or something. Just that they should be avoided. Here then, is our field guide to the worst offenders.

Do you think that what LA Weekly is saying is far off, or does it actually hold some merit? Are these bands, many of which are signed to major label deals, contrived versions of music that came before them? Or is this all in the name of music progression and evolution? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

Below is the full list, which can be read with a summary over at LA Weekly.

20 The Black Keys
19 TV On The Radio
18 Sleigh Bells
17 fun.
15 Death Cab For Cutie
14 Wavves
13 The Decemberists
12 Pomplamoose
11 Edward Sharpe And The Magnetic Zeros
10 White Rabbits
09 Beach House
08 The Airborne Toxic Event
07 Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti
06 Beirut
05 Grizzly Bear
04 Bright Eyes
03 Arcade Fire
02 tUnE-yArDs
01 Bon Iver


  1. SHort BUS
    Aug 26, 2012 @ 21:03:00

    The same authors put Pearl Jam in the worst bands of all time. It is not even worth my time.

  2. TEA
    Aug 25, 2012 @ 14:15:00


  3. joseph aziz
    Aug 25, 2012 @ 14:00:00

    So called “non-hipsters” label people they suspect of being what LA Weekly calls “individuality-grabbers” (aka consumers appropriating other people’s creations as aspects of their own identity) as “hipsters”. They judge “hipsters” because of their disapproval towards what they perceive to be the hipster’s valuation of surface-level aesthetics (PBR, flannel shirts, Sleigh Bells, Pitchfork, etc.). But at the same time, to label someone as a “hipster” in the first place is to make a judgment about someone you don’t know based on this same surface-level information. That person who dresses like a “hipster” (or simply like how young people in the early 21st century tend to dress) and likes things “hipsters” like (things that young people in the early 21st century tend to like) may actually be a poet, an artist, musician, future physicist, etc… or maybe even just a really nice, chill, thoughtful person. They also may not be. Either way, in this material capitalist world, it makes no sense to judge someone’s identity and character based on what products they choose to consume. If you’re so quick to define someone else by an aesthetic they project, that may say more about your own self consciousness and lack of substance as an individual. So at the end of the day, the same people so quick to label others as “hipsters” may actually be the REAL hipsters.

  4. Andrew Martin
    Aug 25, 2012 @ 11:47:00


  5. Andrew Martin
    Aug 25, 2012 @ 11:47:00

    well put

  6. EB
    Aug 25, 2012 @ 10:15:00

    Black Keys, TV on the radio, Arcade Fire, Bon Iver..?? These are a few of the good’uns damnit!

  7. Zed Katsu
    Aug 25, 2012 @ 05:08:00

    I was just going to write yes, at least they marked sleigh bells as shit which they are, then i read this inspired post. Felt better about things and felt like being nice after someone else said all that needs to be said. Except, they forgot to mention sleigh bells are shit.

  8. drbloodmoney
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 22:09:00

    lucas your a G

    This list is someones attempt to draw attention to themselves. Death cab for cutie??i mean..they’ve been around a really long time..bon iver?dude recorded for emma without a deal and gave it away for free…this list is stupid. you know whats hipster…hating music because its hipster, and pointing out who did it before them and how they’re better because they are as popular. shut up and just listen.

  9. Andrew Martin
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 14:46:00


  10. Andrew Martin
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 14:46:00

    well done!

  11. Andrew Martin
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 14:46:00


  12. Andrew Martin
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 14:46:00

    yea they’re trolls

  13. Andrew Martin
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 14:46:00


  14. Andrew Martin
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 14:46:00

    you are the best

  15. Mark
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 13:23:00

    addendum: Ducktails kinda sucks, Willis is pretty good, and WU LYF is FUCKING SICK

  16. Mark
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 13:22:00

    this is a terrible list. it should have bands like Ducktails and Willis Earl Beal and WU LYF. A band is a hipster band because its cool to like them because they’re “underground” and no one else “knows” about them yet. Arcade Fire played the fuckin’ Grammys or some shit. They’re a great fucking band (see: Funeral, or: them live) but pretty far from hipster. LA Weekly your a fuckin clown

  17. Gedi D.
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 12:17:00

    all the above

  18. Gedi D.
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 12:09:00


  19. Jheri Evans
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 12:07:00

    I like you

  20. JohnRHealey
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 12:04:00

    Nailed it.

  21. David Reyneke
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 11:48:00

    bong bong! you know me so well.

  22. Jake Money
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 11:35:00

    The word hipster doesn’t mean anything anymore. It’s ceased defining any one thing, especially any kind of “cultural revolution” years ago. It’s now just a word that friends throw around as an underhanded jab, a way to make fun of white people or simply to describe something that isn’t mainstream but is popular on the interent.

    I listen to a ton of these bands but so does everyone else. What makes these hipster bands anyway? Beards? Skinny white guys? Fat white guys with skinny jeans? Or is it the fact that they’re good?

    We have this unnecessary need to label and define everything and “hipster” has become that label. I could die happy never hearing the word again but seeing that I live in Minneapolis the “most hipster city in the country” I doubt that wish will be granted.

    Here is a list of things that likely make you a hipster.
    – Listening to any music, ironically or otherwise
    – Watching any movie, ironically or otherwise
    – Using the internet
    – Eating or enjoying any kind of food
    – Drinking any kind of beer, extremely cheap domestics or expensive imports / craft brews
    – Shopping at thrift stores or boutique retailers
    – Collecting anything
    – Reading books
    – Owning a bike
    – Etc…

    Needless to say we’re all a bunch of stupid hipsters. Time to move on.

  23. Tyna
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 10:34:00

    An old grandpa is sad because of the his golden past

  24. erikstabile
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 10:30:00

    I checked out the article and it was hard not to notice the American Apparel banner ad perched above the main nav. Is it hipster to hate hipsters while cashing your hipster funded checks?

  25. aboynamedandy
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 10:19:00

    Foals should have been on this list. Despite how undeniably brilliant ‘Antidotes’ is, that band is the biggest pile of hipster mess you will ever see.

  26. David Reyneke
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 10:11:00

    Nice reference!

  27. erikstabile
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 09:46:00

    They’re going to feel pretty silly once they find out Hipsters can read.

  28. Jellyfish Brigade
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 09:44:00

    This reminds me of the part in Almost Famous where Phillip Seymour Hoffman says, “Ah, Jim Morrison is a drunken bafoon posing as a poet. Give me The Guess Who. They have the courage to be drunken bafoons, which makes them poetic.’

  29. j*wavvy
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 09:22:00

    nothing like some friday morning trollbait to go into the weekend.

    i’ve never read LA weekly but it looks like they’re trying to get some blog hits up, especially with dividing this list into 7 (count ’em, 7!) pages. those ad clicks aren’t paying the bills, obvs.

  30. Andrew Martin
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 09:18:00

    L.A. Weekly (and their affiliate papers) is a fucking troll-fest

  31. Matt Siverson
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 09:12:00

    And Pitchfork’s march on LA begins…

    BTW, mislabeling something as “hipster” (which LA Weekly has done here) is even more annoying than someone who is blatantly hipster.

  32. Michael Gibson
    Aug 24, 2012 @ 09:11:00

    Pretty clear way to get attention by offending an entire culture of music listeners, seems like a good business decision to me. I’m seeing this article everywhere this morning.

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