With a revamped Myspace all the rage nowadays I thought I would discuss it in full today. It took me about 10 minutes to figure the thing out to start out my research. I needed to create a Myspace profile, ugh, before I could examine the “new” Myspace. It only took a few minutes but now a boatload of emails will assuredly come floating in. It’s much more difficult to explore the space and find what you are searching for, but the site is undoubtedly looking better than it ever has. After getting a hang of things, which took another couple minutes, I searched for Local Natives. It was the first group that came to mind as I was, at the time, listening to their track “You & I.” I eventually found their page and made some observations.
First thing that jumped out at me right away was the fact that all 24 of their songs off both albums are available to stream for free. Whoa. This is big time progress. I haven’t looked at other bands as of yet, so time will tell if this is a new feature or just their doing. There is a nice “About” section at the top of the page that briefly describes the band. It’s a nice touch. Below is the summarization:
Formed in 2008, Local Natives craft their dramatic and eclectic brand of indie rock from their home base in Los Angeles, California.
They have “top tracks,” “top fans,” “similar artists,” and “influenced by” categories. Nothing new really, but it’s tighter. I looked a little deeper into the “top fans” section and found it to be somewhat pointless as it ranked fans from one to infinity based on fan interaction. Below is the “top fan” description:
Top Fans are people who have interacted the most with an artist and their content. Being a Top Fan gives you access to exclusive content from the artist. This feature is still in Beta, so stay tuned.
The “photostream” area holds just five images, which doesn’t surprise me. Since the “new” Myspace took off it doesn’t appear Local Natives has really been active on it. They have four videos available to watch, which is pretty decent and the layout makes it much easier to access them. Holy smokes, they actually have up-to-date tour dates available to take a peak at. This is quality progress.
The majority of their content seems to have been uploaded on January 28th, so I am not sure if they have been overly active since then. Myspace appears to no longer have the “last login” feature, among other things, so it’s difficult to gather how often they have been on here. Despite the fact that this slightly hurts my research, it’s actually a good thing because I don’t want to see that every band is never accessing their account. By taking this away and noticing current information it gives the illusion that they are on quite often.
I have to say, I’m impressed with this development. Let’s press on and try to find a bit more.
I have shifted my research to Grizzly Bear. They are on Twitter and Facebook seemingly every day. This has proven to be a bit of a step backwards, however. Upon first glance I have noticed that they do not have any songs from their last three albums. That’s a problem. One of the main reasons people used to flock to Myspace was the song feature that Grizzly Bear is not using correctly. They do have updated tour dates, but not much else. There are no videos, images, or anything for that matter. Let’s move on to someone else.
Grizzly Bear began as a home recording project for Boston-bred experimentalist Edward Droste, the son of an elementary school teacher, who laid the groundwork for the band’s otherworldly debut album on a small hand-held tape recorder while holed up for 15 months in his Greenpoint, Brooklyn, apartment.
I have chosen Phoenix as my next subject. At first glance it looks they, similarly to Local Natives, are active on Myspace. They have almost every song from all their albums available to stream, including their smash-hit “Entertainment” off their upcoming album, “Bankrupt!” They also have current tour dates, three videos, and two images. I think bands may be actually taking notice of this renovated Myspace. The old Myspace I have been researching recently appears to have little to no affiliation with the new one.
Of Monsters and Men have their entire debut album available, one new image, current tour dates, three videos, and a seemingly active page. I am, however, noticing that these bands are pretty much putting forth the bare minimum. This new Myspace looks good, is cleaner, tighter, has more access to music, but feels a little watered down. This could be because of the transition to the new space.
After winning the nationwide 2010 battle-of-the-bands competition Musiktilraunir in their native Iceland, six-piece chamber pop group Of Monsters and Men were hailed as “the new Arcade Fire” in Rolling Stone magazine.
I was curious so I decided to look up a couple bands who are pretty inactive in terms of social media to see if they have made an effort here. Arcade Fire, other than having their albums available, has done nothing to their page. Not surprised. The Shins, similarly, doesn’t appear to have done any work to their page since October.
A classic guitar pop group almost nine years in the making, Albuquerque, New Mexico’s the Shins began in 1997 as the side project of singer/songwriter and guitarist James Mercer’s primary band, Flake.
I’m glad we took a look at the new Myspace today. At first glance it looked to be a big deal, but as I dug a little deeper it just appears to be a better looking, easy accessible music player practically. The new Myspace has the look of a more advanced Facebook, but does not have any of the capabilities in terms of communication. It is also reminiscent of Spotify with songs available to listen to, but they are out of order, scattered, and not always available. The space still has a lot of work to do. The Myspace people have their work cut out for them if they want to redraw bands to the site. We also learned, I believe, that this is a massive improvement over the previous space. I have a few ideas for tomorrow’s research, stay tuned!