Hot: Grooveshark is a customizable Internet radio station with the one thing Pandora lacks: on-demand listening. You can tell Grooveshark what songs you like and don’t like, helping the site become increasingly sophisticated at suggesting new music. It seamlessly integrates into popular social networking platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as allowing you to easily connect with others of impeccable taste in house.
Not: Grooveshark isn’t terribly legal. The license agreement requires indemnification, whereby you accept all legal and financial responsibility for sharing copyrighted music. Get two Digital Millenium Copyright Act removal requests and your account is history. The mobile app has been pulled from both the Android and Apple stores thanks to these intellectual property issues.
Bottom line: Grooveshark was probably pretty awesome until the nanosecond that Spotify appeared, but the latter isn’t quite there yet with social networking integration. 5/10
Hot: Jango’s signature feature, “make or break,” lets you aid or destroy a new artist. You can tell Jango how much you want to hear a particular artist, creating distinctions between your love of Queens of the Stone Age and your love of Huey Lewis and the News.
Not: Jango offers very little in the way of anything even remotely obscure. The play-on-demand feature doesn’t work on every song. If you’re a person who is driven insane by pop-up ads, Jango is definitely not for you. Want to cancel? Too bad. Jango membership is for life.
Bottom line: Jango is a workable option for those who want Pandora but don’t live in the States. It’s not terribly attractive for other users. 3/10
Hot: Turntable.fm emphasizes the social aspect in a far greater way than other music sites. It harkens back to late nights spent sharing music over drinks with good friends. You can search the database or add your own tunes. Points are accumulated for playing music that pleases friends, while unpopular songs are skipped once enough people vote them down.
Not: Only five people can DJ per room, making getting a turntable spot at times dicey. Flip side is that if not many of your friends are using this site, a bit of cajoling might be required to fill a room. When your song is voted off the island you have to wait for your next turn, which can frustrating.
Bottom line: Start bugging your friends to get on here. It’s a great way to party with your pals from Melbourne to LA. 10/10
Hot: Rather than suggesting based on past habits, Musicovery matches your biorhythms using a proprietary “mood pad.” You enter in your mood and energy level, Musicovery spits out a song. The “Dance” menu lets you select what genre, decade and speed dance music you want keep the party bumping until dawn. You can also specifically request music that sounds like a particular artist.
Not: Musicovery’s sound quality is very poor, with 32 kbps for the freeloader and 128 kbps for the subscriber. You can’t access information about the artist and song from the site without paying for the premium service, nor can free users skip songs they don’t like.
The Bottom line: Musicovery is great for when you want some sounds but aren’t sure exactly what to cue up. 5/10