June 27, 2011 at 5:11 pm

This Week in Music Apps: Turntables, Fan Apps, and Keeping Your Headphones To Yourself

iphone music appsThe latest installment of our “This Week In Music Apps” series adds a new category: web apps, with two exciting offerings you won’t want to miss, and as always, some great new options to enhance your iOS or Android music experience.

(Developers or music app users: Please suggest music apps for us to cover here.)

iPhone

Mystream (free, pictured): Listening to music is a social activity, but sharing a new track shouldn’t mean sharing headphones. Mystream eliminates the need to divorce your earbuds (or sit awkwardly close to your buddy) by allowing listeners to stream tracks wirelessly to other iPhone users nearby using Wi-Fi or cellphone connections. Friends can stream music to each another, view what others are listening to and sharing, and purchase any of this stuff, which could promote awareness of emerging artists. Crucially, the Live Streaming feature enables real-time sharing so friends can listen together without space invasion.

MusicWatch ($2) helps you never to miss another new release on the iTunes music store by searches for new stuff from all of the artists currently in your iPhone’s library — or just the ones you tell the app you care about. If you get sick of hearing about an artist, or want to keep tabs on stuff not represented by your mobile collection, MusicWatch lets you add or subtract artists at will.

Also-rans: Katy Perry Mobile App (a free artist app); Gleek Songs Free (a free streaming app, featuring songs from the hit series Glee); RadioPup (clean FM radio listening with AirPlay integration).

this week in music apps

Android

Hide Record Free (free, pictured) is a handy little widget for those times when you want to record a musical performance, audio sample, or interesting soundbite without drawing attention to your activities. After setting this app to record, the Hide feature closes the app and records in the background, so you can carry on as if nothing is awry. The free version limits recording time to three minutes (unlimited recording costs $2).

DoubleTwist Player ($5): We covered doubleTwist Player way back in our second edition of This Week In Music Apps, but a major upgrade to this freebie seemed worthy of second mention. Now, you can use doubleTwist along with its desktop client to sync your media between your Android phone and computer via Wi-Fi — just like it took Apple ten years to do.

MP3 Downloader Pro (free): If you’re an unscrupulous criminal enthusiastic music fan, sometimes you just need to download an MP3, regardless of how. This app may not last long in the Android app store, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t check it out before it topples into app store ban-hood, if you want to fill your online storage locker. On a technical note, its description and a legal disclaimer within the app assert that MP3 Downloader Pro is only intended for searching and downloading tracks already in the public domain. Uh, okay.

Web Apps

Turntable.fm (free; see our review and today’s article) is a social music web app for those who sat at the cool kids’ table in school. Still an invite-only beta, the common man can provide his email with the hope of some day getting the nod, but if you’re connected enough to have a Facebook friend who’s a member, you’re as good as in. Who ever thought those Facebook connections would start paying off in the real world? Well, it’s not quite the “real world.” This chat room-enabled discovery service has members of the room serve as a rotating cast of avatar DJs, while empowering the listeners to make judgments on their musical selections. If you’ve “friended” the right people, it’s definitely worth checking out, as over 140,000 people apparently already have.

Wheels of Steel (free, pictured): Speaking of turntables, the free Wheels of Steel web app exploits HTML5 to bring two virtual Technics SL-1200 turntables to your browser, allowing users to mix SoundCloud tracks with scratching, pitch bend, and simulations of some of the charming characteristics with which vinyl fans will be familiar (such as power down, electronic brakes, and tone-arm drift.) The developer is quick to point out that this browser toy is intended more for entertainment purposes than to replace your favorite decks, but we were nonetheless impressed with it’s broad feature set and thoughtful design, which even includes an “end of record” bump that plays at the end of a song.

The week in reviews

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