January 17, 2014 at 2:51 pm

Sony Music Unlimited Powers Music for Bandsintown

bands in town sony music unlimited

Bandsintown works the same as it always did, in terms of alerting you to shows; the difference is that now, you can click a headphones icon to bring up music samples like these, courtesy of Sony Music Unlimited.

Sony and Bandsintown announced on Friday that Sony Music Unlimited will provide music to Bandsintown. This is a great idea, because Bandsintown is an app for finding shows to see, and one aspect of deciding what show to see is, well, “what does this band actually sound like?”

With this Sony Music Unlimited integration, Bandsintown, “the world’s largest concert discovery application,” can answer that question in a scaleable way, because Sony Music Unlimited has somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 million tracks. If you subscribe to Sony Music Unlimited, or are part of the free trial, you’ll get full-track playback within Bandsintown. Or, if not, you’ll get 30-second samples, which is often more than enough to decide whether you’d want to see a particular band live.

This is neat — but perhaps more impressive is that this is Sony we’re talking about here, not Spotify, Rdio, or Rhapsody.

When I reviewed Sony’s first forays into the MP3 player market 13 years ago or so, I never failed to mention how, each and every time, Sony’s proprietary software, under various guises (MagicGate, SonicStage, OpenMG, ATRAC3, Connect, etc.) would ruin Sony’s amazing hardware design. My favorite headline from that era, and one of CNET’s most popular stories that year, was “Sony Ruins Another MP3 Player.” (The article no longer appears to be online.)

That Sony Music Unlimited launched for iOS last year, and that it now forms the musical underpinnings of a popular third-party app like Bandsintown represents yet another milestone on Sony’s long road from “totally closed and proprietary” to “open, integrated, and relevant.”

To give this a try, grab the Bandsintown app.