The evolution of the well-liked music subreddit r/indieheads

‘Twas the night in advance of Christmas, and all by means of the home, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. In fact, scratch that. Since on Xmas eve in 2013, there was at minimum one creature stirring, and that creature established a subreddit referred to as Indie Heads — a place for persons to talk about inide tunes on Reddit.

Indie Heads is just one of the biggest new music subreddits on the site with over 2 millions customers. The moderators who run this web site are governing a massive group of tunes fans focused to a genre that has grow to be extra and far more tricky to define as self-publishing tunes will become much more prolific. But with tentacles that have stretched to other social media platforms, AMAs, and local community projects, r/indieheads is so significantly extra than just a discussion board to chat about the musicians who spawn from independently created information.

When Kyle Lushell, now 31, joined the subreddit in 2014, there were being a handful of thousand associates. Now, there are additional than 2 million customers and a podcast to boot. Matty Monroe, now 25, functions on the podcast. He joined a couple of months after that fateful wintertime evening and commenced working on a couple of jobs just for enjoyable: For Your Thought, a series in which customers generate reviews and designed up discussions about albums that weren’t on the necessities checklist and the Album of the Year collection, in which just about every day for the duration of the thirty day period of December a distinct consumer writes an album evaluation from a document that was unveiled that 12 months.

“From there, I just obtained the notice of the mod staff and they introduced me on,” Monroe explained to Mashable. “Pretty shortly after that, [a moderator] had to go away the AMA stuff guiding, so I finished up getting that over for him. And that is what I have been doing ever because.”

Moderating on r/indieheads is quite identical to other webpages and groups. The moderators have to delete posts that go towards their pointers, but they also get to operate on great jobs that may well be viewed by hundreds of thousands of indie tunes enthusiasts. There are scientific tests that display moderating webpages can have an particularly adverse impact on people’s mental wellbeing, mainly because they have to to trudge as a result of the worst content. But, mainly, their encounters moderating have been fairly entertaining, and the lack of way too significantly information moderation for rule breaking has permitted them to concentrate on increasing the local community.


Inside of the really regular globe of the ‘I desire I was Sh*tposting about new music in a bunker’ Facebook webpage

Several of the unpaid mods of the subreddit r/indieheads bought associated virtually by the way — they had been concerned with the group organically, and then an additional mod reached out and questioned if they’d like to be a element of the group in a much more structural way. Get Rosemarie Smith, a 23-yr-old who began receiving concerned in the Reddit site by composing a blurb or two for the Album of the 12 months collection since “it can be a little something that I experienced normally appreciated as a author.” Finally, she took around some of the curation perform together with coordinating another community undertaking in which buyers charge albums in a pseudo-bracket style.

“And that inevitably received me on to the mod crew in Oct of 2020,” Smith explained to Mashable. 

In the formative times of the subreddit, the biggest struggle was convincing artists to get associated. It is really tough to phone up Lucy Dacus for an AMA and say, “Hey, 28 of my closest close friends want to request you a number of concerns for our on-line forum, you down?” AMAs on r/indieheads are, of course, when the team brings on an artist and enables anyone in the forum to inquire the artist any of their most burning issues. 

Lushell finally established up the Reddit page’s first AMA seven many years ago. It was a little bit of a mess.

“It was with Riley Walker. I approached him soon after a show and questioned for it and it was hilarious simply because neither of us knew how to do it,” Lushell said. “We introduced it way far too early, so people today had forgotten about it when it began. And Riley Walker answered queries for around a 7 days. He just kept coming again and answering queries and stuff. Which is likely my favored matter that I have aided set up because… that initially just one was a complete mess. We experienced no strategy what was going on.”

But, as the group grew, issues got a lot easier. The staff got it down “to a science,” Lushell reported. And they no extended had to check with artists to be part of in on AMAs after exhibits. As an alternative, artists and labels begun reaching out to the mod workforce of r/indieheads about how they could get the local community of now thousands and thousands of indie songs supporters to talk about their music. It has become a kind of mandatory halt for any indie band on an album launch push tour, and with some artists even saying new releases on the discussion board. 

You may imagine the AMAs are the most enjoyable section of operating as an r/IndieHeads mod — feel of web hosting and doing work with artists like Girlpool, Illuminati Hotties, Lucy Dacus, Animal Collective, IDLES, and so quite a few more. And, in the starting, they definitely ended up. But as soon as AMAs within just the neighborhood actually took off, the subreddit dug correct back again into the motive for their development in the 1st spot: A area for fans to connect with each individual other.

“The sum that artists adore the subreddit and appreciate reading through it and looking at what men and women consider possibly about their individual music or just songs in standard,” Monroe explained. “I consider we’ve just fostered like a definitely wonderful community for talking about audio.”

Smith wrote for the Album of the Yr sequence for a long time, and, now as the curator, said it’s gotten “a great deal greater” and, frankly, extra artistic. 

“We have these kinds of a very good steady of writers who routinely place points together [for the series],” Smith mentioned. “They’re definitely eager to do this, simply because it’s just a superior outlet for them. And we’ve seen all types of things that I feel normally takes a lot of distinct varieties. People will do quick fiction primarily based off of the vibes of the file or they will just write about like the tunes them selves. It truly is generally appealing to see what type of varieties people today choose with it.”

Monroe agrees. “You will find just these types of a prosperity of talent on the subreddit, from a writer’s point of view. And just staying equipped to assistance curate that and aid deliver these writers collectively — it really is just genuinely particular.”

And that’s what makes this room so wonderful — it’s a group that fosters creativeness, and isn’t going to lend alone to shit speaking. It can be just for exciting, and all people appears to be aware of that.

“We’ve finished some genuinely humorous, insightful stuff about the yrs,” Monroe claimed. “We’ve just fostered a genuinely beautiful neighborhood through r/IndieHeads that I’m genuinely happy of.”