After-Party Music-Nazis

The recent launch of Google Music Beta has got me thinking a lot about how people listen to music at after-parties. Specifically I mean the ones at someone’s house. Normally by this point everyone is super-wasted; there will probably be a few DJs in the room and most certainly a few with strong opinions about what their fellow guests should be listening to. Sometimes iPods get plugged in, sometimes YouTube gets its turn and sometimes someone’s iTunes library gets plundered. Whatever the method of delivery; it’s usually a music nazi in charge.

Our alpha music nazi, should he or she be a DJ, will probably have their laptop on them, in which case you might be at their mercy for quite a while, dependant on how bored they get continuously playing you tunes or whether they’ve made some awesome playlists so they can join in the festivities. iPods and iPhones are more limited in battery life and memory so the minor-music-nazi may only get a limited time window in which to be in aural charge.

Google Music Beta could level the playing field somewhat. Providing anyone who uses the free service a substantial 20 gig online music locker, this service could allow the layman that doesn’t carry a large proportion of their music collection on them at times to actually have an opportunity to share their musical joys via smartphone, tablet or internet browser. Y’know, if they can fight their way to the stereo that is. GMB is only available in The States at the moment, which you may think a tad unfair, until you remember that firstly it’s still in beta, secondly there’s a few pesky copyright laws to get round  and thirdly, we’ve had Spotify for ages.


Spotify actually works fantastically as a party music tool. Definitely in a fight between it and GMB, it’d give it a bloody nose running home to cry. It has that instant-gratification drunk people desire and YouTube normally provides. But it manages to combine that with playlists that the music-nazi has lovingly beavered away at home on. Best of both worlds, no?

You could argue that GMB would win because it is free, and these days to really enjoy Spotify you have to pay for it. So what? People shouldn’t ever be scared of paying for music. Those artists have provided you a service. And a bit of their soul, no doubt. However, in terms of what we’re talking about, it is Spotify’s flexibility and giant eclectic catalogue that helps earn its keep. Allowing room for fanatics and dilettantes to co-exist somewhat peacefully in the party atmosphere, it does so all on one platform.

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