Monthly Archives: May 2012

Feel like smiling?

It’s hump day so wrap your eye-holes around this video of a live lip-dub proposal. Be sure to keep an eye on her reactions in the top right corner.

Enjoy sobbing like a baby by the end of this, I know I did!

Advertisements
Tagged , , ,

An interview with Hanson

So my friend writes for the music blog Tone Deaf and got to interview Hanson. Yes, that Hanson.

 

Check out the interview here.

Tagged , ,

So Spotify is pretty great

Update: I have been pointed toward this picture about what Spotify and services like it mean for the musicians. In my excitement about giant libraries of streaming music I forgot about the artists that create that music. I don’t know where these figures have come from so so take it with a grains of salf.

Remember kids, if you can buy directly from the artist, always do so!

It has been a week since Spotify launched in Australia. One week of “free” music streaming and sharing and I’ve got to say that it’s pretty great.

The service

You’re offered three subscription options: Free, Unlimited ($6.99 per month) and Premium ($11.99 per month).

Spotify’s basic service only gives you access to the desktop client and social features and is free in kind of the same way that television is free. You get the access to the songs but ads are peppered in every so often. It’s clear that the free service is really only their to tempt you into paying money for the Unlimited or Premium options. Considering the relatively low price of the service they could have just done away with the Free model all together but at least they give you the option to try before you buy.

The Unlimited plan removes the ads and offers you the radio mode which creates random “radio stations” (read: playlists) based on genre or band selection. However, the sound quality in both Free and Unlimited is kept at 160 kbps.

The radio station is a great way of stumbling upon new artists

Finally we have Spotify Premium, which is really where the party is at. Sound quality is boosted to 320 kpbs, you get access to the mobile apps and there’s an offline mode for playing your favourite playlists without an internet connection.

The mobile app is really what makes Spotify worthwhile. Having access to 15 million+ tracks wherever you are is supremely cool. Considering only having access to that library through your desktop is incredibly limiting, especially in 2012, it really seems like the Premium services is the way to go and I’m sure that’s exactly why the app feature is left for the most expensive tier. The folks at Spotify ain’t dummies.

Social networking is very “in” this year

The other big feature that they love to talk up is the social aspect of the service. Spotify is completely integrated with Facebook. You can share playlists, find friends and let people know what you’re listening to at any given moment. You can also subscribe to various playlists so they are automatically updated whenever the author of the list makes any changes. This seems like the perfect place for musicians to share playlists of their own. I’d love to find out that the One Direction kids are actually super into screamo.

I’m not necessarily a huge fan of Facebook integration, I certainly don’t need to know what dumb celebrity articles that girl I knew in primary school is reading but this is actually a useful way of sharing music. It’s also an entirely optional feature so who really cares, right?

Downsides?

It’s certainly not perfect, I’ve already discovered several songs that I’ve been unable to find on the service, forcing me to go elsewhere and throw down a few dollars. Obviously you also don’t get to keep the songs you listen to, this is a streaming service after all. If songs ever end up being removed from the service then it’s just tough luck. However, Spotify has been around for a while (even though it has only recently arrived on our shores)  and appears to be going from strength-to-strength.

I’ve tried other streaming services not available in Australia through VPNs and other forms of online trickery and Spotify’s service doesn’t seem particularly unique. Also keep in mind that it has only been available for a week, maybe after extended use its problems will become more obvious. However, it does offer an established, quality, legitimate music streaming service that lets me laugh at your taste in music. And really, what more could you ask for?

Tagged , , , ,

Podcasts are go!

So after months of thinking about but putting off making a podcast, it has finally happened!

I have teamed up with a uni buddy, James, and later on we should be joined by previous contributor, Jack.

The podcast is called, rather cleverly, the Eclectic Dynamite Podcast and it covers much the same stuff that I cover here on the odd occasion that I actually post anything.

It’s a pretty rough first episode but it should improve as we get more familiar with what it is we’re actually doing. Think of this as more of a pilot episode.

You can find it and subscribe to the RSS feed here and it has been submitted to iTunes so hopefully it will be up there soon as well.

Tagged , ,