RUBBISH MUSIC: Why we judge others for their musical tastes

It's common to judge someone based on the music they like, despite musical preference being largely subjective. But why do musical tastes differ so, and why do we feel the need to criticise those with tastes that don't match our own?

While working in music retail, I hitched my sanity to a sense of smug superiority. This was not deliberate, so much as natural, to combat – what I declared to be – idiocy and ignorance, from the faceless mass of wallets and fingers and mouths yearning for the new Katy Perry. They knew nothing of Syd Barrett’s obscure albums; probably couldn’t even pronounce Tchaikovsky; and couldn’t tell the difference between Katie Melua and Norah Jones (I no longer can). We were proud of knowledge, touching invisible monocles and pursing our lips around non-existent pipes when some poor heathen thought Pink Floyd was a single artist rather than a band.

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