Sometimes, you just want to pass the time listening to music, creating playlists or searching for new bands. Mielophone is a small application that helps users do these things, while also providing them with the means to listen to their favorite radio stations.
Mielophone is an open source application that redefines the way you listen music by implementing features like artist search, radio and YouTube player in a single tool.
The application also provides all the available information about a band in one place, so one can easily access their songs, the band bio and similar artists.The Looks
Mielophone comes with an intuitive interface; all of its features can easily be accessed from a single window, making things a lot easier.
The main menu gives you access to the following categories: Artist (you can search artists by typing in their names), Album (allows you to search an album by name), Song (lets you look for a certain song), Video (plays YouTube videos), Radio and the Market (where you can install new plugins, which basically give you access to new mp3 streaming websites).
You can start searching for music immediately after installing the application. All you need to do is select the category, and then search for the desired artist/ song/ album.
After searching for and choosing a band, the application will display a brief description for it and the albums available for streaming. If you want to know more about the band or view the albums it has released so far, then you can use the “I” button in the upper right, which displays further information. This gives you access to more band info, such as history, current or former members, as well as similar artists and relevant tags.
The similar artists feature is an interesting addition to the application, because it allows you to quickly find and listen to other bands, usually within the same genre as the one you searched.
After choosing the desired album, you can select a song and wait for it to start streaming. During testing, we noticed that most songs started playing immediately after clicking on them. The majority started when clicked, while few took a while before playing (3-4 seconds). Some songs didn't start playing at all.
Searching by album name is also an easy process. Of course, you can just click the album section and the application will automatically give you access to the most popular albums.
The bundled radio player is quite simple and easy to use. When entering this section, you can access the most popular radio stations, or you can choose your desired category.
Each one features a selection of popular radios, but you can also add your own in the Open URL tab. There is one downside, though: Mielophone doesn't display the currently playing song, which can be annoying at times, if you like a certain track and want to find out what it’s called. One can’t but hope a feature like this will be added in the future.
We also encountered an annoying bug: if you are listening to a song and you want to switch to a radio station, the song stops playing, but you must move the volume slider in order to listen to the radio.
Overall, the audio quality is good to very good, with most radio stations and music playing at more than 256 kbps, which ensures an enjoyable audio experience.
Mielophone allows you to search a video for the currently playing song just by right clicking on it and selecting the Find Video option. This is a great feature, useful for anyone who wants to watch a video for the song without going to the main page and having to search for it.
The app also includes a simplistic YouTube player that can be used to watch videos, both in a window or fullscreen. The only complaint one could come up with about the way Mielophone allows you to view YouTube videos is that it will not allow you to open the video in your default web browser using the "Watch on YouTube" button.
The button did not work for us and we had to manually open the browser and search for the video.
If you're not searching for a certain band, you can also find music using a predefined tag cloud. You just have to go to the main menu and open the Tags menu, which gives you access to a selection of music genres, like rock, pop, electronic, soundtrack, and others.
Even more, Mielophone can help you find music based on your current mood (sleepy, relax, cool, in love, groovy, piano, etc). It's great that the songs really suit the chosen mood and aren't randomly chosen.
You can save all the favorite songs to a playlist and play them at any time. You can do this is by clicking the name of the song or artist at the bottom of the application window.
While using Mielophone, we came across a few annoying bugs. For example, if you want to view a video, and music is still playing in the background, you must stop it manually, otherwise you will listen to both the song and the video at the same time. You must exit the video, stop the background music and start it from the beginning.
Furthermore, in some cases, if you've already loaded an album and you're trying to play a song outside it, you can find yourself in the situation of not being able to listen to the new song.
Fortunately, this doesn't happen very often and it can be fixed by stopping the currently playing song using the bottom controller and then starting the new song.
Mielophone gives you quick access to your favorite songs and encourages you to search for new bands using the “recommended” system. It also helps you find the video for a song with a simple right click and has an interesting radio component that allows you to add custom radio stations.
Although Mielophone is a very user-friendly app, it also has a number of problems. Some songs won't start playing, and if you want to watch a music video you must stop the currently playing song first, since this is not done automatically.
Mielophone tries to be the go-to tool for music enthusiasts who also want to discover new bands while listening their favorite songs. Most of the time, it succeeds, having only a few bugs that will hopefully be fixed in future updates. Mielophone is a free and open source application, so you don't have to pay anything for using it, just download and enjoy it.
Here are some snapshots of the application in action: