September 7, 2013
Last week, I wrote about Timbre, a music app that allows users to discover live music from local and popular musicians based on their current location. Well, here are some other cool music apps that you probably don't know about (but should be using).
If you go to a lot of live music events, then definitely check out Lanyard. The Web platform enables users to search for past concerts they've attended, and allows them to essentially create a scrapbook moment per event. You can add photos to events you've attended, give each concert a 1- to 5-star rating, and write a short blurb on your thoughts about the show. Check out Lanyard for free.
Available on both the iPhone and iPad, Track 8 adapts a Metro-like UI (the design used on Microsoft's Windows Phone) for iOS. It's a visually oriented music player that utilizes your current music library, pulling data from your iTunes directory, and works best if every song you own has a corresponding album cover (so, find cover art for all that music you downloaded through Torrents). Aesthetics is essential to what makes this app so fantastic: great graphics, smooth animations, and a clean, simple layout. Buy it on iOS ($2.99) for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.
RichSeam was created on the premise that the best music recommendations come directly from artists you like. The Web platform does this by providing you with information on past and current collaborations and connections between musicians. So, when I search for ‘N Sync, RichSeam shows me that Justin Timberlake was once a member of the group and that ‘N Sync once collaborated with Gloria Estefan. RichSeam utilizes numerous online APIs to essentially create comprehensive artist profiles, listing their corresponding music genres, labels with which they're affiliated, tracks available on Spotify, associated videos on YouTube, and external links to other resources. Check out RichSeam for free.
While those of us familiar with iOS rarely (if ever, anymore) use the native iTunes platform from our desktops, we forget that this desktop-mobile seamless connectivity is not universal. If you're an Android user, then you should definitely download doubleTwist. The doubleTwist desktop player is designed much like iOS and is designed to sync quickly and painlessly with the corresponding Android app. A $4.99 in-app upgrade on the mobile app allows for AirSync, AirPlay to Apple TV, and podcast management. DoubleTwist also offers a music subscription service called “Magic Radio” for $3.99/month, which finds and plays new music similar to those in your current library. Download the desktop platform for free. You can also download the Android app for free, with an in-app option to upgrade ($4.99).
We listen to a lot of music (or, at least, I know I do). Because of this, keeping track of when our favorite artists come out with new music can be difficult. Qusic is a Web platform that lets you know when new tracks are added by your favorite bands or musicians. Right now, it only updates you when artists add new music on Spotify, but there are plans to add other digital services. If you have a Songkick account, you can easily sync bands that you're already tracking through that service. Check out Qusic for free.
Sonarflow is a music discovery app that helps you find new music based on artists and genres you already listen to. Instead of sorting through lists of text, Sonarflow offers a visual way for you to check out new music. Colored bubbles on the app represent the music on your iTunes or Spotify account, while the white, circular starbursts represent artists that you should check out. The alignment of circles tells you the proximity of different music styles from another, so a white bubble halfway between Sufjan Stevens and Ke$ha is an artist that blends aspects of both music styles. Download Sonarflow for free on iOS. To sync with Spotify, instead of iTunes, download Sonarflow Spot. Download it for free on Android. An ad-free version of the iTunes-associated iOS app is available for $1.99.
Stereomood is a free music app that lets you choose playlists depending on your mood. While the word “mood” is used loosely here (“walking” and “lost in Jamaica” are two such moods from which you can choose), each mood features a great selection of songs (most of which you're probably not familiar with). I have actually been using the Web version of Stereomood since its release a few years ago, and the recent addition of a mobile app is fantastic. The mobile app itself has a very clean design and gives you the function to save specific tracks or moods you like. Download it for free on iOS. Download it for free on Android.
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