Want to talk about obscure genres? Think C86 – probably the least descriptive genre name ever. I love it. It was named after a cassette compilation and is actually a mix of a bunch of different genres. Trying to explain the sound over text is a losing battle, and I’m not confident I understand it myself. It includes early Primal Scream and the Half Man Half Biscuit. Also, I’m not sure if this is a genre itself, but here’s a link to Tribe Called Red, who brand themselves as pow-wow step.
Shoegazing, only because of how it came about. The story behind shoegazing came from the guitarists looking down all the time at their pedal boards, making it look like they were gazing at their shoes. The singers also tended to look down at the ground, with the most common theory being that the lyrics were very introspective for some reason that made them look at the ground. I’m not sure how true the singer part is, but as a guitarist myself the idea of a genre being named after the activities of a guitar player has always made me happy.
Cowpunk is such a hilarious genre name. Cowpunk, for the uninitiated, is like cyberpunk, but with cows. Think Blade Runner, only Deckard is retiring cowplicants instead of replicants. Cowpunk, for the uninitiated, is the least likely offshoot of country music ever, and as a result, one of the most awesome. Specifically, it’s country crossed with punk. I also like the genre name Zeuhl, which was created by the awesome Wagnerian-pomp-with-free-jazz-intensity-and-trace-amounts-of-rock band Magma. Also, it reminds me of Ghostbusters.