The 5 Best Tools and Websites for Music Discovery

The 5 Best Tools and Websites for Music Discovery The 5 Best Tools and Websites for Music Discovery

Over the last decade, we've somehow grown accustomed to the extensive presence of algorithms in our lives. Every website and social media platforms we use seems to be carefully tuned to amplify and satisfy our needs, putting us in front of new things we never thought we wanted but now do want.

In this context, music is no different. Growing up in the 90s, I started listening to music on a tape player, followed by a CD player shortly after, which in turn was replaced by illegal downloading by the time I was thirteen.

Contrary to teenagers now, my music taste was defined by scarcity. In a way, things were easier: a few decent music magazines, record stores, MTV, and friends, would end up defining the music you were going to listen to for the rest of your life.

Now, it's all different. A constant stream of music, made possible by the revolutions in music production and distribution, removed the music bottleneck caused by the traditional music industry and democratized music, making every artist equal in the eyes and ears of a new listener.

In this new era of music discovery, streaming services reign free, collecting data on your music taste and serving you fresh tracks daily, satisfying your hunger for new music even before it manifests itself.

It's all wonderful, don't take me wrong. I've discovered tons of artists I love thanks to the power of Spotify Discover Weekly, Apple Music, and YouTube algorithms. Nowadays, I'm listening to more music than ever before, and it's all thanks to the powerful engines governing streaming platforms.

Yet, sometimes I miss the excitement of discovering an artist by pure chance, skipping through old vinyl in a second-hand shop, or having a friend mention this new band they've come across.

When nostalgia hits me and I want to take back control over what I'm listening to, these are the website where I find safe harbor. Welcome to the algorithm-free music discovery!

The 5 Best Tools and Websites for Music Discovery 

Indie Shuffle

A sort of a hybrid between a music blog and social media, Indie Shuffle provides excellent music articles and reviews that'll help you delve deeper into the genres you love. However, it's Indie Shuffle's vibrant community that makes it an exciting digital space for music discovery.

On the platform, you'll be able to create your own profile, save music, curate your playlist, and interact with others, which brings a sense of conviviality and dedication reminiscent of the music forums of old.

The platform is ideal for those who are looking for a space to discover independent music and upcoming artists in a positive digital environment fully accessible through the web or mobile app.


Aside from being a crucial platform for music makers across all genres, Bandcamp is also a great tool for discovering new music every day. Thanks to their perfect tagging system, artists can carefully label their music so that new potential fans can easily come across their latest releases.

On Bandcamp, you can also follow other people's profiles to check what they purchase and recommend on the platform. By selecting the users you follow, you can create constantly-evolving personalized music suggestions inspired by other music enthusiasts, record labels, and blogs on Bandcamp.

Finally, their music blog is extraordinary, with in-depth articles on all genres and artists that’ll help you expand your knowledge and explore uncharted sonic territories.

Contrary to streaming services, Bandcamp feels and is a platform made with the artist in mind, helping you dig deeper into genres, discover new musicians, share your favorite tracks, interact with other users, enjoy new releases, and support independent artists.

Hype Machine

Hype Machine is a music platform that’s been around for almost two decades. It gathers new music across the web and acts as a centralized hub where people can discover new music daily. Hype Machine does this by searching through hundreds of music blogs and collecting information on the most popular tracks online.

The intuitive interface allows you to vote new tracks, create your own playlist, share music, and follow the artists and communities you're interested in to keep up with their works. The most appreciated tracks end up on the website’s Popular page, making it even easier to discover the trendiest music online.


For almost a decade, people have been saying that SoundCloud will eventually shut down. Yet, the iconic music platform is still here, and with its 120 million monthly active users, it’s still one of the most popular platforms where to discover new music and upcoming artists.

Music playlists play a crucial role in using SoundCloud as a music discovery tool. In fact, plenty of users create and regularly update playlists where they add music found on the platform, bringing to life an ongoing selection of tracks that others can share, follow, and enjoy. In a way, Soundcloud is a platform for music curation that values the contributions of its users.

You can use SoundCloud's tagging system to search for your favorite styles and genres across the platform, and you can interact with the artists themselves by commenting on their songs.

As someone who grew up (at least artistically) on SoundCloud, I feel that no other music platform has yet been able to recreate the atmosphere of conviviality and creativity that defines SoundCloud. Perhaps Discord will one day achieve similar results, but for now, I’d recommend using SoundCloud to explore new sonic territories and interact with others.


Reddit fosters a diverse and engaged community of music lovers by offering everyone the possibility to post and create a group (subreddit) based on the music niche they love and by voting and interacting with every post. What Reddit has done amazingly well over the years has been to promote a positive culture, not based on self-promotion but on genuine human interaction.

As a user, you can join multiple subreddits and become your own tastemaker while contributing to a thriving network of like-minded people. Regardless of your sphere of interest, with a community of almost 60 million daily users, there's no doubt you'll find on Reddit the inspiration and human touch you were looking for.

A few words on blogs, podcasts, and radio stations 

It’s wonderful to see how many blogs and online radio stations are still committed to delivering a carefully-crafted music selection in an era when music discovery seems outside of human control.

It'd take an entire book to name and describe all the great music projects out there that are sharing high-quality music, so I'll just mention the few blogs and radio stations I listen to whenever I look for new music.

NTS Radio and Resonance Extra are both phenomenal London-based radio stations. They focus on blending and transcending music genres through a diverse and perfectly-curated selection of programs that'll satisfy every alternative music enthusiast.

Consequence of Sound , Pitchfork , The Quietus , and A Closer Listen are the review sites I check regularly. These four websites publish high-quality, in-depth music reviews that give me the right enthusiasm to embark on new sonic exploration. In particular, the passion and dedication shown by the A Closer Listen team to promote experimental music is nothing short of extraordinary.

Finally, I’m currently listening to two podcasts that encourage me to widen my sonic horizons: one is the exceptional Song Exploder by Hrishikesh Hirway, in which artists analyze their songs piece by piece and explain the creative process that brought them to life.

The other one is The Listening Service , in which Tom Service (ha!) talks about classical pieces and analyses their structure, the historical moments when they were written, and their cultural impact.

Final thoughts

I hope this guide will help you satisfy your needs for music discovery. I believe that combining new and old technology is the best way to become a music connoisseur nowadays: the excitement of discovering music by ourselves, combined with the endless flow of sounds provided by streaming services, can enrich anyone's life and help us enjoy (and not just discover) music every day.

Good luck, and stay creative!

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