Almost as big as Animal Collective’s MPP, the highly satirical Alt Bro bashing blog Hipster Runoff has grabbed the attention of bloggers, music news seekers, and most importantly…Alt Bros. When I first heard of the sensation I checked out the site, shrugged and out clicked to another blog. Over the next week I found myself going back more frequently and soon it was bookmarked on my Google Reader. I still read every post, but what bothers me is the fact that I’m not sure if I like it or not. If you read any of my posts you will find that I’m highly opinionated and when it comes to this indie cultural sensation, I just can’t decide what side of the fence I’m on.

Let’s start with the good. The guy (I’m assuming it’s a man) is sharp. His Animal Collective post was thoughtful and one of the best reads I’ve had on the Internet in awhile. Satire, which is usually done poorly (especially by our generation) is in good hands with Carles, who chooses every stupid word with care. It’s fun to have a finger pointed at you and not realize it. I’m definitely not an Alt Bro, but I have strong “hipster” tendencies when it comes to shrugging off bands I used to love and now hate due to tweens falling in love with them. He captures a lot of what is wrong with my musical quirks and I’m one who can laugh at my own faults. He doesn’t give numbered reviews. This is very important to me when it comes to Hipster Runoff because I don’t care what numerical value he gives an album, we have Pitchfork for satirical reviews, right…nobody still takes those seriously do they? The biggest pro to Hipster Runoff is his passion for not seeming to care. You can tell this guy is having fun writing these articles no matter how depressed/nonchalant he may appear through the writing.

Now, the bad. I feel like the blog is a one trick pony. The more I read, the more I find that every one in four posts are actually fresh pieces of satire that haven’t appeared on his site already. I’m not expecting the brilliant display of thought shown in the AC post everytime, but I feel like the blog cranks out posts just for hits or to appease an ADD generation. I would much rather have one post a day that really has a lot of time put into it. It’s not a music news/mp3 blog, so frequency/beating the other music blogs to the punch is of no relevance…take your time and write strong articles that got readers there in the first place. Second, and if you are twitter friends with him you will understand this…the guy is just depressing sometimes. He has one of the biggest music blogs in the world, cheer up buddy. I know that it’s a staple of his satire, but it’s getting stale. I like the mysterious persona but the same joke over and over needs to stop. I also hate (and kind of secretly love) when Alt kids talk about how much they love or hate Hipster Runoff. He wins either way. He won because I wrote this article…and like therapy writing this has made me decide what side of the fence I’m on.

I like Hipster Runoff. It’s fun and I’ve been over thinking the whole relevance to the indie music community. I think it should be one great post a day and I know that in a year or so it will get really old, but right now, I like it. What does this mean…nothing. But, I can now read his articles without the shame while laughing…I’ll just laugh and enjoy. Thanks HRO for a fun daily read.


  1. Hipster Runoff is not my thing. I'll give it another shot.

  2. Umm, don't you guys leave numerical reviews, just like Pitchfork? But I guess it's okay when you do it because you aren't "the evil p4k".

    I hope Carles never changes. I love hearing about how he wants to 'off' himself on twitter. He's a way more talented "Stuff White People Like" guy.

  3. We give numerical reviews because we are a music news/review/video/mp3 blog. What makes our reviews different than P4k's is that we don't have to worry about interviews/band relations being halted due to a bad review (nobody talks to us anyway for the most part)...or have to up the numbers for bands that would draw bigger crowds at our annual music festival. We like and hate things here, with no influence.

  4. this is how awesome and real Carles from HRO is


  5. Yes, Zach, but for the sake of argument, there is no way you could "know" that Pitchfork actually participates in this action because of why you say they do. I often agree with their scores, not always, and when I don't I either put that down to a difference of opinion or different taste from the reviewer, not some hidden agenda.
    I mean, I can see your point. I guess I'm just an optimist.

  6. Stephen, you're 100% right about us not knowing. And even if they do shave scores, as my fellow We Listen For You blogger Hank says, love them or hate them they are one of the best written/researched music sources we have.

    I remain a bit skeptical however of their reviews just because of how big they are and like it or not they are a business. I would question myself if our blog ever determined the outcome of a bands career like P4k does. Also, be it P4k, HRO, or this blog, the only review that matters is the person who listens. I really enjoyed the last Silverchair album but would expect zero of our readers to agree. We just do reviews because there is so much music out there and hopefully we can point people with similar taste to stuff we like.

  7. I like HRO, it's the LOLCATS of music blogging! And I mean that in the sweetest way possible.

    Though I'm with you, it's repetitive at times (much like Bikesnob to cyclist), but everyone once in a while, it's spot on!


  8. How dare you mock the great and powerful Carles? All your soul are belong to HIM!!!

  9. "I’m definitely not an Alt Bro, but I have strong “hipster” tendencies"


    Seriously, other than the Jews, there has never been a more self-loathing subculture. But at least Jewish people aren't always broke.

  10. given the chance, i would tear off carles' jam and beat him to death with it. the guy is a prick of the highest order. speaking from personal experience.

  11. @ above: "Jaw" not "Jam." dammit.

    the sentiment remains.

  12. I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.