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Back in the days I used Last.fm suggestions but they are way too generic and aren't useful to me anymore. I switched to RYM and its recommendation engine is much nicer, however I'm also looking for some iPhone apps that would allow me to discover awesome new music on the go.

I'm looking for these features:

  • an easy way to browse through artists and albums;
  • a wide range of non-mainstream artists;
  • a recommendation engine and/or a smart “similar artists” engine;
  • track previews (at least 30 sec.);
  • no limitations on total preview play count;
  • no need to subscribe to any paid service;
  • ideally, reviews for selected albums;
  • some kind of bookmarking to store my findings.

I don't care for the price if the app meets my needs.
What does AppStore have to offer?

Please, post one app per answer.

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3 Answers 3

Discovr is a great app for this. You just enter the name of an artist, and then a list of related artists appear. A network graph appears with all of the artists. You can play previews, and watch videos. Pretty decent app.

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Thanks! I checked it out and it is good. For some reason, however, I keep getting "No songs found for this artist" for any imaginable artist (may have to do with the country I live in). Still, the app is cool. –  Dan Aug 6 '11 at 8:32

It won't necessarily fulfill all your criteria, but Pandora is a great place to start. :)

Pandora syncs "radio stations" with pandora.com. These stations are created based a specific type of music, music that sounds like a specific song or artist. A certain amount of skips are allowed per hour, to find something you like in a particular station. After that point you must listen to what the station has or switch to another station.

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Well, unfortunately it's unavailable in Russian App Store (as Pandora itself in Russia) so I can't check it out. But thanks for sharing, others might stumble upon this as well. Generally, we're trying to develop the community around this Q&A by writing definitive, full answers so it would be nice if you could expand yours with some overview of what's (not) in the app, maybe a link and a screenshot could help as well. Thanks! –  Dan Aug 6 '11 at 2:59
up vote 0 down vote accepted

SuperSonic by HunterMedia

While the app doesn't let you directly browse artists and albums, it definitely uses a terrific recommendation engine and lets you focus on finding the new music—by not standing in your way and getting a bunch of recommended tracks based on a given artist seed.

Each preview lasts for a whole minute which I think is enough to form an opinion (and bookmark the track). Bookmarked tracks can be re-listened at any time (with the same time constraint). The buy icon link is small and non-obtrusive.

Out of ten tracks I have listened to, I loved eight and two of them were by my two other favorite bands that the app had no way of knowing. I also came to like the “passive discovery” workflow where I hear new music without having to browse through the bands and tap tap tap.

Last.fm radio was never even close to this.

And SuperSonic is free.

The last bit that got me was adjustable recommendations popularity, danceability, tempo and the ability to ignore these settings altogether.

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Just to clarify, I am not in any way affiliated with the app or recommendation engine (I even live in a different country). It's just that I got exactly what I needed, and even more. –  Dan Aug 6 '11 at 2:42
    
A grain of salt: the app won't play music in the hold mode. I guess I can live with that though. –  Dan Aug 6 '11 at 2:46

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