Five years ago, on October 5th 2008, the domain name onethirtybpm.com was registered by a bunch of kids who wanted somewhere to express some thoughts about music they liked. The name, One Thirty BPM, was a reference to an of Montreal lyric from the song “Suffer For Fashion”; one carefully chosen for its rolling-off-the-tongue and its esoteric appeal to fans of a certain type of music. In fact, it turned out to be a little too carefully chosen – over the years, I’m not sure that anyone actually caught on to the of Montreal reference; more often than not we were mistaken for a dance music oriented site, and eventually we opted to change our name to the much simpler and more acronym-able Beats Per Minute – BPM. Not that we weren’t a dance music site at all – in fact we more or less let our team of writers, which has swelled and contracted continually in size over the years, write about whatever they wanted. From indie to classic rock to hip-hop to pop to electronic to dance and even classical – we’ve had it all on BPM. It’s been a project that’s been close to the hearts of all those that have contributed, but especially those of us that have been with it for the whole five years. Even in times when we couldn’t give it as much love and attention as we wanted to, we’d always hold it up somehow, passing the buck from New York to London to Los Angeles. We had help from team members all over the States (Georgia, Florida, Vermont, to name just a few) and all around the world from Canada to Sweden to Australia to Scotland to South Korea. This has allowed us to be introduced to like-minded people that we never would have met otherwise, and all I can say is if you’re thinking of writing for a music site – or starting your own – go ahead and do it, just for this reason.
The community of music writers out there is vast and varied, but all are welcoming. Having that central tenet of musical passion as a bedrock to your relationship before you’ve even met is an incredible springboard for friendship, and many strong, long lasting, and continent-spanning relationships have been made out of One Thirty BPM’s inauspicious beginnings. But let us not forget the main reason that we came together in the first place, and the reason that we’ve kept it going for these last five years: the music.
The period of October 2008 to October 2013 presents some of the most interesting, diverse, controversial and original music that there’s ever been. And with the rise of the internet and social media, it’s never been more widely spread or discussed. It’s been our pleasure to add our voices to the chorus of commentators that now inhabits certain corners of the internet, and we’d like to take this opportunity of our anniversary to try and make a summation of all that has happened in the last 60 months of music. Over the next couple of weeks, to celebrate our fifth anniversary, and a truly unique and new era of music creation, sharing and discussion, we’re going to be unveiling a number of lists that try to sum up what we’ve made of the last five years. We’ll be revealing our best 30 EPs, 100 tracks and (for reasons that are hopefully obvious) 130 albums, from BPM’s lifetime (October 2008 to October 2013). It’s been a lot of work, but we’re extremely proud of the outcome, and we hope you’ll join us in celebrating it by sharing, commenting on or even merely reading what we’ve put together.
– Rob Hakimian
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