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5 great services and ways to help quell your weekly music craving

Marilyn Manson once called music “the strongest form of magic”, and he’s right you know. After all, how else can we possibly survive the week’s trials and tribulations?

We all have our favourite genres, our beloved artists and our prized playlists, but listening to music often means purchasing a service, or downloading tracks illegally. We don’t condone the latter, of course, but there are ways to get your music fix in a fair and free way.

Here are some stellar examples.

HypeMachine

Thanks to its apps (as well as its website), the HypeMachine will keep your feet tapping all day. It trawls the world’s blogs and picks the most popular music at the time, arranging them according to a number of factors. You can also personalise your experience, by creating an account, and favouriting tracks.

While it doesn’t do well at predicting tastes, it does keep you up to speed with what’s trending in the world’s musical zeitgeist.

Get the Android, (US$3.99) iOS and unofficial Windows 10 and Windows Phone 8 apps. Visit the website here.

SoundCloud

Everyone’s favourite service (also used by us, incidentally), SoundCloud is a haven for indie artists and big labels alike. You can get your progressive house and melodic folk fixes on at various stages of the day, thanks to its intelligent genre filters.

The music uploaded is uploaded by the artists too, so there’s no need to feel guilty. It’s also a stellar idea to pick a track and listen to SoundCloud’s recommendations on similar songs. It’s strangely accurate.

Soundcloud apps are available on Android and iOS. If you have Windows 10, have a search for “soundcloud” in the Windows Store. Also, visit the SoundCloud website here.

Deezer

Although available as a paid service, French-service Deezer also has a free tier that gives users their musical fix on the cheap. These tracks are bookended by advertisements, but they’re less obnoxious than other services, and are surprisingly catchy themselves.

Marilyn Manson once called music “the strongest form of magic”, and he’s right you know

Although you won’t find Tay-Tay or Kanye on Deezer, the service does house a ridiculous number of artists from way-back. Fancy some Backstreet Boys or Spice Girls? Deezer’s your poison.

Get the Android, iOS, Windows 10 apps. Note that the apps are extremely limiting, while the website allows free ad-supported play

YouTube

“Uh, what? But YouTube’s a video service!” I hear you protest. Yes, it is, but it can also be used as a fairly great playlist creation tool. Although the Android and iOS apps don’t allow users to minimise the video and play audio only, there are other apps available that do just that (there are some great ones on Windows 10 too).

But beyond apps, YouTube is a great place to find old music, and music from artists who share some bad blood with streaming services. Often, you’ll be able to find entire albums uploaded to the service too.

Get the Android, iOS, and Hyper for YouTube unofficial Windows 10 apps. Also, visit YouTube’s music section here.

MixCloud

Another cloud, but this cloud is a little different. While SoundCloud allows users to upload single tracks, MixCloud concentrates on longer tracks, or mixes. If you’re interested in an uninterupted two hour mix of Japanese-inspired downtempo, or a 45-minute dubstep sensory assualt, MixCloud is your platform.

There’s also an Android and iOS app in case you fancy taking those mixes on the road. Visit the site here.

Author | Andy Walker: Editor

Andy Walker: Editor
Camper by day, run-and-gunner by night, Andy prefers his toast like his coffee -- dark and crunchy. Specialising in spotting the next big Instagram cat star, Andy also dabbles in smartphone and game reviews over on Gearburn. More