Indie dad or Emo Millennial? What your Spotify Wrapped says about you

Nifty Swiftie: did Taylor make your 2023 Wrapped?
Nifty Swiftie: did Taylor make your 2023 Wrapped? - SARAH YENESEL/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Around the world, phones are lighting up with heartfelt messages from Taylor Swift, Olivia Rodrigo and the rest of pop’s A-list. They’ve been wheeled out to thank fans for bingeing on their music via Spotify across the past 12 months. The world’s biggest streaming service has just shared with subscribers its annual “Wrapped” countdown of their favourite songs – accompanied by bells, whistles and those aforementioned “thank yous” from juggernauts such as Swift.

But what does your “Wrapped” countdown say about you? Should your family be worried Ronan Keating’s cover of Fairytale Of New York is in your top 10? Is it a cause of concern that you seem addicted to the awful Bono and The Edge record? Do we need to talk about all the Drake on your playlist? Maybe we do – read on as we break down 10 “Wrapped” tribes and what their picks say about their music tastes – and the rest of their personality.

The Nifty Swiftie

Top Song: Cruel Summer by Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift didn’t actually release an original new album in 2023 – but that hasn’t stopped you from listening to her 24/7. Cruel Summer, which became a hit four years after its release, was the one you gravitated to – largely because, with all those Era Tours tickets vanishing in a nano-second, it really was a cruel summer for you.

The Indie Dad

Top Song: Anything by The National

You’re middle-aged, your teenage kids refuse to be seen with you in public, and you’re confused by how much you like Lavender Haze by Taylor Swift. Relax, The National feel the same – which is why you have found the two albums they put out in 2023 such a refuge.

The Person Who Has Given Up On Music

Top Song: Anything from Autumn Variations by Ed Sheeran

Peekaboo: Ed Sheeran released the bleak Autumn Variations this year
Peekaboo: Ed Sheeran released the bleak Autumn Variations this year - Annie Leibovitz

Music for you is something to be lobbed on in the background because it’s better than listening to a random idiot on the radio. What you want is sonic wallpaper – and it doesn’t come more ready-made than the two acoustic records Ed Sheeran released in the past 12 months. Turn one, tune out, and get the rest of those shelves put up.

The Emo Millennial

Top song: Misery Business by Paramore

You have a job, a steady relationship, a dog you treat like a person – and the slowly dawning understanding that you’ll never own your own home. In other words, you’re a typical 30-something. But inside part of you is still the miserable teenager who would spend their weekends hanging around shopping centres with their pals – a side to yourself with which you reconnect when you listen to emo screamers Paramore, My Chemical Romance and Fall Out Boy.

The neo-goth

Top Song: Dollhouse by Melanie Martinez

You fret constantly about climate change and/or your parents embarrassing you in front of your friends but are far too edgy to listen to anything as ancient as The Cure or Sisters of Mercy (those guys are, like, 400 years old). Instead, you sooth your angst with Billie Eilish (though you weren’t much into her second LP, where she spent the entire time complaining about being famous), Girl In Red, Clairo and Melanie Martinez – your listening enhanced by that oversized hoodie you refuse to remove.

The Hipster Folkie

Top Song: Go Dig My Grave by Lankum

You like folk music, but only when it has that artisanal seal of approval. Step forward Lankum who sound a bit like The Dubliners but dress like death metal roadies and fill the quiet bits in their music with loud buzzing sounds. The Quietus loves it – so you do, although it also gives you a headache you’re not telling anyone about.

The Confused Rap Fan

Top Track: I Swear, I Really Wanted to Make a “Rap” Album But This Is Literally the Way the Wind Blew Me This Time by André 3000

Er, what? André 3000 confused fans with his new album
Er, what? André 3000 confused fans with his new album - Kevin Winter

Outkast are your all-time favourite hip-hop act, and you were recently delighted to discover their creative driving force, André 3000, has put out a new solo record, New Blue Sun. Will it be as catchy as Hey Ya! As powerfully confessional as Ms. Jackson? Wait, what… why is it just loads of flutes? Where’s André gone? Oh, and why have you spent the last three hours sitting in the dark listening to it?

The Gen Z Shoegazer

Top song: Sugar for the Pill by Slowdive

The musicians in Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine are older than time itself – you’ve heard that some of them may actually be in their 40s. But you stumbled on their music on TikTok and now you’re obsessed. Shoegaze is like sadness distilled into three-minute chunks and is definitely more fun than waiting for the second season of Wednesday to come to Netflix.

The Fake Indie Fan

Top Song: Bad Idea Right? by Olivia Rodrigo

If anyone asks, you proudly explain that your favourite album of 2023 was Blondshell by Blondshell or that Black Country New Road Live LP with slightly too much saxophone. When no one is looking, though, your secret shame is a penchant for pop – especially Olivia Rodrigo, whose new album bears a more than passing resemblance to Pixies. That’s what you’re telling yourself anyway.

The Landfill Indie Holdout

Top song: I Found Out by Pigeon Detectives

Music has moved on, but for you, it will always be 2007, Pete Doherty remains the coolest man alive and civilisation peaked with Klaxons winning the Mercury.