There’s a new app out there for singers who want to practice their screaming vocals. As everyone knows, screaming just makes music better. Well, okay, that’s at least what metalheads like myself think. However, for those wannabe screamers, there’s the new The Art of Screaming app available for iPhone and iPod touch. Based off of the line of instructional videos that try to teach singers how to scream without turning their vocal cords into silly string, this app brings portability and interactivity to the lessons, helping to warm up and practice those tricky screams.
Users can learn lessons on proper body structure, exercises for strengthening one’s core to make the body more accustomed to screaming, and even proper head placement. There are audio playlists for vocal warmups to help develop those vocals and techniques. What happens when the vocal cords are screaming for vengeance? Check the app’s SOS section. The teachers behind the app, Susan Carr and Wolf Carr, teach vocal lessons professionally, and they count a variety of singers as their clients, including Troy Sanders from Mastodon. Who doesn’t love Mastodon?
So Pocket God has been a complete success. This is no real secret. The original game – with all its pygmy torture and ridiculous amount of mini-games that cover just about every popular genre on the App Store – continues to receive plenty of updates (and accolades!), it’s spawned a sequel of sorts, comics, and now an official theme song! Written by Parry Gripp, no less.
The Pygmy Theme made its first aural appearance in Episode 45: Dance Dance Execution and has been so well received by the fans that Bolt Creative has made it available for download on iTunes. Don’t fret; the song will also see Google Play, Amazon mp3, and Zune releases “… in the coming weeks.”
The tune can be had here for a mere $0.99, and I have to admit it’s pretty catchy. But don’t just take my word for it. Check out the surprisingly awesome music video below and hear for yourself. Pygmies! Pygmies!
Regular users of the Spotify app have just been given yet another reason why the service is the best music product out there. Radio functionality has just been added in the latest update.
It’s a feature that’s been available for PC/Mac users for quite a while and allows users to create stations based on their favorite artists, albums or playlists, with only a single tap saving the track for future reference.
For those who want faster access, the Radio tab makes it possible to view and listen to other stations. Give a favored song a thumb up and it all goes towards Spotify’s personalization system which recommends ideal stations for the user. It should ensure that there’s never a time where you’ll be stumped for what to listen to next.
The service is currently available for free in the US while other countries will require a premium subscription to access the functionality.
My isn’t Slash just having a massive comeback year? He’s got a new album, new band mates, and now he’s got a an app for rockers with his brand on it. While you’d have to be hiding in a bunker not to be at least passingly acquainted with the late 80’s metal icon of Guns N’ Roses fame, you may not be familiar with IK’s line of audio accessories.
But, if you are a guitarist or bassist with an iPad you’ve likely at least stumbled across their AmpliTube apps. The first iteration was featured in the original iPad ads and lets you play and record music with realistic amp effects. Now they’ve released AmpliTube Slash, a universal app with the same pedals and Marshal amps Slash favors.
The app, like the rest in the series, is also a multi-track recording studio. Apparently Apocalyptic Love, Slash’s new album was helped along with several IK products including iRig.
“AmpliTube iRig comes in really handy for on-the-go practicing, recording, or just jamming on different ideas – even if it’s on the bus – it’s right with me all the time,” Slash said, adding, “I’ll do some tweaks on the Marshalls, but there are also different effects that are available including distortion, chorus, auto-wah and more.”
AmpliTube Slash is sold as a stand-alone product or the effects can be purchased in AmpliTube’s main app as in-app purchases at $9.99 for the whole kit or a-la-carte effects for $2.99 each.
How many music cloud storage apps does it take to fill an iPhone or iPod touch? We’re not sure; they roll out so often it’s hard to keep track. On Tuesday there was a noteworthy addition – Amazon Cloud Player arrived on the App Store. It didn’t get much attention from Apple, but that’s likely because the service is very much like iTunes Music Match.
If you are a U.S. subscribers to Amazon’s music service you can now access your cloud-locker to stream your collection of MP3’s to your device. You can also download music to save bandwidth when you don’t have a Wi-Fi connection or for offline listening. Cloud Player also allows you to upload your existing music collection and access your iPhone or iPod touch music library. You can create and edit playlists, but you have to buy the songs and albums, or own them already, to store them in Amazon’s corner of the sky.
Cloud Player devotees get 5GB of free stooge. Add-on storage plans start at $20 a year for 20GB. Be sure to enable automatic downloads if you want your collection to stay current – the default setting is “off.”
The only limitation to Amazon Cloud Player on iOS is that Amazon doesn’t want to give Apple a 30% take on all sales, so like their Kindle app, content must be purchased on Amazon.com and then it gets synched to your device. Look for an iPad release soon.
When devices like the iPod hit the market, suddenly instead of listening to a dozen songs on a CD player one could take their entire thousand-song music library wherever they went. Today, streaming services like Spotify and Pandora take things a step further by offering nearly every song in existence anytime, anywhere. With so much choice though, picking the right song for the right occasion becomes even more difficult. Now, Songza is here to help.
Users can tell Songza what genre or decade they want a song to come from or even something as vague as what they are doing or what mood they are in. From there, Songza’s “Music Concierge” searches its “thousands of original playlists handmade by music experts” to select the ideal mix. Users can also save and share their favorite playlists through Facebook and Twitter. Best of all, there are no fees, advertisements or listening limits.
The problem Songza fixes, not knowing what song to play, is a pretty first-world one. Still, it is another great example of more convenient living through technology. Songza is available now for free on the App Store.
Spotify, one of the most popular on-demand social music services, updated their iOS app last week. There were a lot of fixes and a few tweaks, but the biggest news is that the app now uses push notifications.
Spotify is a great way to listen to almost any artist, song, or album you can think of, but one of the primary functions of the main desktop app is the social connectivity. You can follow friends from Facebook, subscribe to their playlists, and even send them music. Now the app is focusing its attention on this aspect by notifying users when a new friend joins, when a playlist you subscribe to has been altered or when someone signs up to listen to your mix.
Also added, a new user guide helps newcomers explore some of Spotify’s features as they translate to iOS, Retina display interface and album art, and better offline synching,
All these changes are welcome, but what’s still missing is Spotify’s genre and user-created radio stations, and their integrated third-party music discovery apps, things we hope to see in future updates.
At this point it seems that developers are willing to turn the iPad into literally anything and it is getting a little ridiculous. Forget virtual guitars and turntables, Futulele is here to turn iPads into virtual ukuleles. It is almost as crazy as it is just plain awesome. Is there really anyone out there who wouldn’t want a ukulele?
The set-up should feel familiar to anyone who has dabbled with Apple’s own GarageBand app. Users pick some chords and start strumming away. Users can also record themselves and adjust various chorus and effect settings. According to the developers though, what sets Futulele apart from competing synthesizers is its physics-based, CrystalClear 4.0 sound engine. Apparently it makes Futulele “the first app which sounds absolutely like the real thing.”
Additionally, those with both an iPad and iPhone can join the two into one instrument using the app. A special guitar case and Futulele Remote App allow musicians to pick chords on the iPhone while simultaneously strumming on the iPad.
Play the perfect summer soundtrack. Futulele is available now on the App Store for $4.99.
Sony’s Music Unlimited service, which works similarly to Spotify, Rdio, and other “all you can eat” music services, has had an Android app since June of 2011, but iOS adherents to either the free or premium online music service have been waiting for a way to stream their collection through an iPhone. As of last week, the wait is over. Basic users can play songs form their music stored in Sony’s cloud, and the full on-demand service is available for subscribers. There is also a 30-day free trial to get new users to convert.
For free you can stream, as the name suggests, endless ad-free pre-programmed genre stations, get song and artist suggestions from Sony and listen to the tracks you own. $.3.99/month opens the on-demand catalog, give access to premium channels and let’s you create and edit playlists. The app is getting lukewarm user reviews so far, and we’re disappointed it’s not a universal build, but if you use the service and have tested the app we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Want to make bass drops that are so sick, the CDC will have to declare a pandemic? Want to make dubstep so dirty that you’ll feel compelled to put on an episode of Game of Thrones just to feel clean again? Then Bass Drop is a must-download. This app lets anyone make some sick dubstep beats. I’m an undercut away from being Skrillex!
There’s a keyboard for making assorted “wub wub wub wub” sounds from 3 different sets, and 12 buttons that can add effects, bass lines, and drum loops. These buttons can be configured with different types of the sounds, and with the ability to have them be toggles, or only play when physically held down. 3 different preference layouts can be saved to make recreating favorite tracks easier. Bass Drop is currently free through the end of May, so aspiring electronic musicians can get in on portable dubstepping at an unbeatable price.
The iPad is increasingly becoming a must-have tool for professional and amateur musicians alike. The sheer amount of accessories and tools that can be connected to the iPad for music is amazing. The Carbon 49 by Samson is another one of those musical iPad accessories.
The Carbon 49 is a USB MIDI controller designed with the iPad in mind. The MIDI controller has an iPad slot to hold the iPad and it works with almost any iPad synth or music app that supports MIDI. The Carbon 49 can even be powered by the iPad itself for those musicians that need increased mobility and less wiring to worry about. The controller has 49 velocity-sensitive keys, Transpose and Octave buttons, Pitch Bend and Modulation wheels, 14 adjustable performance-related parameters, and a 3-digit, 7-segment LCD screen that displays the controllers behavior.
Since it’s a ‘USB’ MIDI controller, iPad users will also need the iPad Camera Connection Kit to give the iPad a USB slot to hook the Carbon 49 into. The Carbon 49 is selling at various online retailers (like J&R) at $89.99.
What happens when a location-based service like Foursquare and a radio streaming services like Pandora are mashed together? We end up with something like WahWah.FM. WahWah.FM, a German-based start-up, is a music service that lets users create their own radio stations by picking music on their own iPhones and simultaneously listening and streaming those songs to anyone else who’d like to listen.
Unlike Pandora and other services that may use algorithms and recommendations to pick songs for stations, every user is their own DJ and can choose which songs they will listen to and broadcast to their listeners. Users can tune into to other users all over to world to check out what they’re listening to. Stations can be posted to Facebook to let friends know that music is being broadcasted. And there are even ways to interact with the listens to the stations each user has created.
WahWah.FM is a free service and is now available on the App Store. Check it out and start streaming.
Frisky, the electronic music internet radio station, is now available on iOS with an eponymous app. Frisky comes with two distinct flavors of stations to listen to: Frisky and Chill. Frisky is for high-energy dance music, boasting the same shows from the DJs scheduled on the Frisky website. Chill is programmed to slow things down, keep things cool with ambient and lounge music with some movie scores mixed in. The Chill station is an extension of their ChilloutSundays programming, except as a 24/7 station, and it’s currently only exclusively available through the app.
Each station changes the interface’s appearance slightly, with even the volume slider matching the color scheme for the station: warm pink for Frisky, and cool blue for Chill. A simple swipe of the finger switches stations. Frisky supports 128 kbps MP3 and AAC streams, along with a 48k AAC stream for listening over cellular networks without taking up too much data. Listening status can be shared via Twitter, Facebook, and email. Best of all, the app has launched for free.
The effects of the iPad can be seen across many communities and subcultures one of the biggest being the music world. Apps like Mixr and djay continue to make the turntable scene less restrictive and more approachable. Now, Sawa Digital is looking to get in on the action with a new update for their Dub Siren DX app which adds iPad functionality.
Dub Siren DX claims it is “the world’s best-selling Reggae, Dub and Dubstep app” and lists Gorillaz as one of the professional DJs it counts among its users. In addition to iPad support, the update also adds AirPlay functionality, radio control, a new interface, a new audio engine and new samples. Exclusive to the iPad version is EQ functionality. Users can even remotely control music on their iTunes library using the app.
Now iPad owners can drop the bass. The updated Dub Siren DX is available now on the App Store.
Every music fan loves to attend concerts. It’s not always practical or affordable, unfortunately. This is precisely where Qello helps out.
It’s an app that allows its users to view concerts wherever they are, all through the Qello interface. For free, users get to view a track from every show as well as hours of free content that’s also available. For $4.99 a month, users get the full experience.
The full experience allows users to create their own setlists, adding their favorite tracks in whatever order they wish. Content is available from the 1950s to the current day of music, with a plethora of music documentaries also accessible. Every genre thinkable is covered here. AirPlay support then makes it possible to stream all this content to the big screen via Apple TV.
Qello is out now for both iPhone and iPad. It’s free to check out samples of the content on offer with a $4.99 monthly subscription required to view everything available through the service.
There are plenty of reasons for someone to show another person some photos. The trick is to find a way to do it that isn’t incredibly boring. The folks at ImageAMMO, LLC are aware of this issue and have come up with their own app to combat the problem: the aptly named ImageAmmo.
ImageAMMO allows users to display and peruse their image library using a number of 3D interfaces. These shapes range from spirals to cubes, and they can manually sift through everything or start a slideshow as they see fit. The app automatically incorporates the iOS device’s library so there’s practically no setup involved. It also supports external displays, so users with a VGA adapter (or AppleTV and AirPlay) and monitor can create presentations that are much more interesting than the norm.
The developer has also adapted the software for music libraries. IA Jukebox gives users the option to shuffle through their music libraries in much the same fashion as the photo app. Album covers reconfigure themselves on the screen to create interesting shapes, and calling up a particular song is as simple as tapping the screen a couple of times. I’d think hooking it up to a TV would make selecting background music for a party much more entertaining.
Both ImageAMMO and IA Jukebox are available in the App Store right now for $3.99 and $2.99 respectively. Just think of the presentation possibilities.
For musicians who like to glitch breaks, Alex Matheu has just released GlitchBreaks, an iOS manipulation tool for “glitching” breakbeats.
Users can work with the 90 high quality loops that come with the app from various artists including Alex Matheu himself and others like Daniel Myer (Haujoob, Architect, and Destroid) and Juan Espinosa (Cellmod). If those high quality beats aren’t enough for the more advanced users, performances can be brought in through iTunes or copied and pasted from another iOS app.
Features include a four channel mixer with four continuously looping channels, auto-BPM detection, XY-Pad loop modulation, a cut editor/sequencer with four save slots, and much more.
The app description promises that it’s easy enough to operate for a beginner user with enough features for the glitch-breaking pro to love. The app is universal and has retina display graphics for new iPad users. The app currently costs $4.99.
Many iTunes users with messy music collections are familiar with the TuneUp plug-in. It cleans up a music collection by filling in missing information, providing missing cover art, and as of a recent update, even removes duplicate songs. Their new mobile app offers some of that technology for the iPhone music collection, but, surprisingly, that’s not the app’s purpose.
TuneUp Mobile instead takes on Shazam and Soundhound by identifying music tracks after hearing only a snippet. It works well, but as TechCrunch reports, the primary difference between this new app and the established players is that TuneÚp Mobile is, as yet, unmonetized. That means it’s free to download and has no ads or in-app purchases. All the features are unlocked.
CEO and founder of TuneUp Media Gabe Adiv says he’s “not concerned with monetization of the mobile app right now,” but the app itself functions as an advert for the desktop product in that it identifies songs in a collection in need of a “tune-up” via the same diagnostic tools, but doesn’t actually fix the problems.
Along with song identification and diagnostics, TuneUp Mobile allows sharing to Facebook and Twitter, provides song lyrics and links to iTunes for song purchases. We’re hoping for a universal build in an update soon.
In a strange mash-up between painting and music, developer LeafNotes has released Soundbrush. Soundbrush works by drawing lines or shapes. Those lines and shapes turn into corresponding sounds. Each paint color stands for a different instrument (for example, blue is a piano).
The artist-musicians using this app get to hear the notes as they’re drawn. Users can even go back and delete previously drawn notes by double tapping; so more refined and thought-out pieces are definitely possible with Soundbrush.
Soundbrush uses both major and minor and major and minor pentatonic scales as well as the blues scale. A musical grid can be displayed to help pay more attention to exactly which notes are being drawn on the canvas.
Users with no experience with either drawing or music can take a stab at the app and still have plenty of fun. While there are no templates for new users to play with, there is the video below posted by LeafNotes showing the creation of a song/painting and how it sounds.
Hearing about an adventure/music/rpg is enough to pique my interest, and that’s exactly what Arman Bohn‘s Arranger is setting out to be. However, reading over a few of the more descriptive elements has gotten me more than interested. It’s gotten me downright excited, actually.
“The game is an Adventure/RPG that combines elements from classics like The Legend of Zelda, WarioWare and the original Sierra adventure games,” according to the developer. Now if that doesn’t get people’s attention then I suppose there’s no hope for the world. The mini-game laden adventure is looking pretty fantastic in a simple, retro-esque sort of way. Players will be controlling the tiny musician as they attempt to save the world in a less-then-typical fashion. Rather than direct combat or level-grinding, they’ll be gathering a number of musical instruments in order to craft a tune that will avoid whatever this particular catastrophe entails.
Arranger is still a little ways out, being slated for a Summer 2012 release, but it definitely looks like something to keep an eye on. If the trailer below is any indication, it just might be worth the wait. It’s also apparently going to have some great music.
Propellerhead Software, developer of music-centric software apps, has just released Figure, an iPhone music creation app for instant inspiration.
Figure allows amateur and professional musicians to create quick, original music in seconds by entering drum, bass, and lead synth beats. Figure features an easy-to-use interface that even non-musicians can use to produce their own music. The app description even claims that no previous playing skills are needed to use the app.
Propellerhead’s CEO, Ernst Nathorst-Böös, describes the inspiration behind the creation and interface of Figure, saying, “mobile users’ aspirations are quite different… They desire immediacy, a diversion, to start playing fast and most of all to have fun.”
Gesture controls are used to tweak and alter sounds. Users play Figure by sliding a finger across the play pad. The sound is always kept on key and on beat. The synth sound is powered by Propellerhead’s Reason, a popular virtual studio.
Figure is available now for only $0.99 on the App Store.