Ever have trouble finding new music? Ever wonder when that new favorite band is coming to town? Those who answered yes to either question should probably check out The Hype Machine.
Started in 2005 by New Yorker Anthony Volodkin during his sophomore year of college, The Hype Machine (Hypem.com) is a website that aggregates select music blogs and reposts excerpts and songs. Each song also has a link to the original blog, where in many cases people can download the song for free.
The Hype Machine homepage has the latest songs that have been uploaded from the select music blogs. Another section on the site features the most popular songs of the last three days. By changing the list every three days it gives people the opportunity to be exposed to new artists all the time.
There’s also the search feature, which enables web-surfers to look for songs from their favorite artists. The diversity of music on the website is remarkable—ranging from notables like Bob Dylan and Jay-Z to up and coming bands few recognize. Additionally, each page lists the band’s tour schedule.
When University of Miami sophomore Danny DeOliveira recently found out about The Hype Machine, he was in awe. “Lately I’ve been hunting the Internet for music, and this will make my life that much more easier,” he said. “I might become addicted.”
Because The Hype Machine links to places where people can download songs, critics contest that the site is just used as a path to download music without ever having to pay for it. Electro artist Boys Noize, who also operates his own label and is featured on hypem.com, has requested that his songs taken down on numerous occasions.
In an e-mail interview with The Miami Hurricane he stated that while he “thinks blogs and mp3s are cool, it‘s not cool to post a track in super quality months or weeks before the official release.” He added, “if it continues like this I’m not sure how long my label BNR can survive.”
Mashup artist E-603 sees it differently, though. Via an email with The Miami Hurricane, he said that artists “can possibly get helped substantially by The Hype Machine whether they agree or not.” He explained, “the website helps smaller independent artists like myself make a splash in the popular music world.”
And for those who don’t want to download songs for free, purchasing music from Amazon or iTunes through Hypem.com supports both The Hype Machine and the artist.