Jamendo just got better, Archive.org should take note

I first heard about Jamendo when their interface was only available in French. It was still a bit underdeveloped and as such didn't hold my interest all that much. Recently I began to hear wonderful tracks available there being regularly featured at Black Sweater, White Cat. I just had to check them out again. Lo-and-behold, Jamendo was now available in multiple languages. After just an hour of sampling music, I found three tracks which will be featured on the forthcoming netBloc this month. I was blown away by the quality of the music and the music-discovery features.

  • Found with the Jamendo player is Jamendo radio which loads a constant flow of random selections from their catalog.
  • On each album page is a listing of similar releases.
  • On the main page is a listing of the newest releases, recommendations, albums of the month, archived, and releases needing to be reviewed.

All these features were excellent in and of themselves and really helped you discover excellent new music, but Jamendo had something else up their collective sleeve. On February 27th Jamendo launched a new feature specifically designed for music-discovery. It's called Spiral and it's just made Jamendo shine that much more. The Spiral displays albums in a... well... a spiral. Five arms of the spiral are featured – Popular, Popular this month, Popular this week, Random and Releases. You begin use of the spiral by clicking one of the albums, it's then loaded in the center and removed from the arm it was featured in. You can then listen to it, download it, recommend it, add it to your starred albums, skip it or hide it. Skipping a release will take it out of your spiral's rotation for a week. Hiding it will keep it out of your spiral permanently.

With all the ways in which you can discover music at Jamendo, it's currently tough to beat when it comes to quality, variety and ease of use.

It's a true shame that such an important resource as archive.org has yet to implement any kind of music-discovery solution besides their "Spotlight Item", "Top Batting Averages", "Most Downloaded" and "Staff Picks", which rarely change. I only hope that they plan on implementing a random listing, at the very least. As it is now, discovering music at the archive is a painful exercise in patience.

Keep up the great work Jamendo!