Game, set and iMatch


Every move that Apple makes in the digital sphere has implications on the digital entertainment world and last week’s announcement of the iCloud was no exception. As predicted, the company’s new cloud service stores the data that exists on various computers, smartphones and tablets to the virtual space so that that calendars, mail, contacts, photos, music and documents will be seamlessly updated on all your devices. Apple’s ubiquity and the fact that the iCloud is such an all-round data product means that it has already surpassed Amazon and Google’s cloud music services. It makes you think – where is Microsoft in all of this?

Apple’s iMatch feature is their answer to Google Music and Amazon Cloud Drive in terms of the management of music libraries. Firstly, iCloud means that any music you have bought from the iTunes Store in the past or future will automatically be available for your other devices: whether that’s a PC running Windows Vista (but not XP), a Macbook, an iPad or an iPhone.

Apple managed to secure what Google and Amazon could not: agreements with the major music labels. Most interestingly, for $24.99 a year (only available in the U.S for now), iMatch will scan your existing iTunes library for music you haven’t purchased from iTunes. It matches those songs with their equivalents in the iTunes Store and automatically adds the 256kbps iTunes version to your iCloud library. If no match is found, you can upload the song to the cloud yourself. The number of unmatched songs you can upload is limited to 25,000.

Reaction to iMatch was mixed. Many commentators seemed disappointed that the iCloud didn’t instantly revolutionise our entertainment habits. Apple are not offering a music streaming service to rival the likes of Spotify, rather they are offering fancy synchronisation of your existing music collection. While it’s true that with major label support and a catalogue of 18 million songs, iTunes would be the ultimate streaming service, that is not within the interests of Apple. Their modus operandi is to sell more of their iOS devices.

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Band of Blogs: Birdy covers The xx, Kreayshawn, Active Child & Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs

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Birdy – Shelter

15 year old Jasmine Van den Bogaerde first came to attention with her cover of Bon Iver’s Skinny Love in the UK. This time around she turns The xx’s Shelter into a burning piano ballad.
Birdy – Shelter by OfficialBirdy


“She’s got the swag and it’s pumping out her ovaries.” Welcome to the new generation of hip-hop. 21 year-old female rapper Kreayshawn (pictured) has just signed a major label deal after her brilliant debut single Gucci Gucci hit over 2 million views on Youtube in under a month.

Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs

A ridiculous name, some ridiculous head-dress and a guy called Orlando. Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs’ new single Trouble sounds like a cross between a house-focused Hot Chip and Caribou. Catch him at Oxegen.

Active Child & How To Dress Well

Take one flame-haired former choirboy who’s interested in choral ’80s music and pair him up with a skewed alternative R&B producer and you get the unique collaboration Playing House which features on the former’s upcoming album.

Active Child – Playing House (Ft. How To Dress Well) by VagrantRecords

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Sites of the Week: Hello Giggles, Wave At The Bus & My Doodle Songs

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Hello Giggles

Zooey Deschanel and friends have started her own “lady-friendly” entertainment website.

Wave At The Bus

One dad’s year-long task to embarrass his 16 year old son by dressing up in a different costume every morning as he leaves for school.

My Doodle Songs

Google’s interactive Les Paul guitar tribute now has its own site and instructions on how to play popular songs.

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Meet the Rock Video Girls

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Back when big hair and spandex ruled American rock, there were a coterie of scantily-clad girls who were regularly hired to dance seductively in music videos. This is a brief look into an era that music thankfully forgot.

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