You have favorite artists. They tour, and release new albums. You have many ways to keep track of them, but Sound Collection (iOS, $3) ties it all together in a nice, neat package, so you shouldn’t need anything else. And if you subscribe to Rdio or Spotify, you’ll be able to use Sound Collection as a handy front-end for listening to new stuff from your favorite artists, as well as whatever of their albums are missing from your collection.
Sound Collection’s $3 price will turn off some people right off the bat, but it’s fast becoming one of my favorite apps. Its powerful approach begins with assessing the music collection on your iOS device and your iTunes library, so obviously, it only works if you rely heavily on those. Tabs for Concerts and Timeline show all of the close to your location, as well as all of the current and recent releases from those artists, with data provided by Last.fm and MusicBrainz. If your favorite rapper has a bunch of mixtapes coming up, Sound Collection will probably miss those, but it has everything else, or at least it did in out testing.
Push Notifications are a big part of this app — when your artists announce tours, it’ll let you know with a pop-up message. Sound Collection will also tell you when your favorite artist is performing outside your radius, for reasons any hardcore music fan would readily appreciate. If you love a Paris-based electronic artist who rarely comes to the U.S., it can tell you when her next date is, regardless of your distance. If you see something you like, calendar and mapping options are included within the app.
If you’re missing albums by an artist in your collection, Sound Collection knows, and can help you fill in those gaps via Rdio or Spotify — or iTunes, if you’re keeping it old school. However, we think the app works best if you’re one of those people who used to use iTunes and now uses Spotify or Rdio, because it bridges those worlds nicely.
The beauty of this app its its simplicity. It pulls information from many sources, presenting it in a way that won’t overwhelm you.
10/19 update: As of today, this app is free for a limited time (see comments).