Shock horror; music is free.
Well, kind of.
A large range of record labels have signed a deal with a service called Spotify, which sounds a more apt name for sanitary towels.
In a sentence, Spotify is a free iTunes without the ability to burn or transfer tracks/a high quality streaming service with a interface begging for an Apple lawsuit.
However, unless you use my very first invitiation hyperlink (either shortly or indefinitely) it is actually a paid for service (99p for a day’s listening or a tenner a month).
It’s currently only avaialable to Europeans but there is software for both Windows and Mac.
I only tried it today, mostly listening to childhood music which I only used to have on cassette – and it’s fine actually. When looking for some obscurer names I got the expected lack of results but I’m not going to complain.
It’s said in the near future tracks may be avaialable to download, which really would be generous. But even so I think most users know how to capture their soundcard output to a file. Not that I advocate that, you see.
Why are ‘they‘ doing this? I guess it’s due to the battle over music piracy having long been lost so it’s better to off to serve the tracks themselves, albeit in a slightly limited way. And then there’s also the credit crunch. There I used the 2 C’s on my blog.
I’m quite a cynic (for a start I think download albums are a rip off but I can tolerate buying singles online), but in this case I welcome the service. The software is light, attractive and easy to use and songs load fast and sound fine (it’s said it’s 160k streams).
This is basically the clearer source for where you’d normally resort to songs posted on YouTube or file shared, or even debuts premiered on artists sites or social networking accounts. And in some ways is a return to borrowing music from a library.
I can assure the industry if I get to hear records first I’m more likely to buy them (if I like it). I’ve always liked collecting physical items with the art etc. and did so even when people made me cassette copies of albums over 10yrs ago.
So, in a word: Excellent.