Amazon launches Soundunwound, wiki-like music data site

Amazon today launched a beta of SoundUnwound, a website that compiles music-related data from IMDB, Amazon, Musicbrainz and user contributions, Wikipedia-style. Oh, sure, dear reader -- it sounds good, but GREAT. Just what the world needed: flamewars between goth band editors over the hopeless existential futility of NPOV, and shoegazers nominating emo kids for deletion and vice versa ad infinitum. [ citation needed ]. More: And the Lights Go Up on SoundUnwound! (via pho list)



  1. Goths, Shoegazers, and Emo kids? I would think the real problems would come from Pitchfork-reading hipsters who write a glowing Fleet Foxes entry in 2008 only to try to remove in 2009 when pastoral folk-inflected indie rock is SO OUT.

  2. Fleet Foxes! I just bought their stuff yesterday. I really like a few of the tracks. And thanks for the heads up, I’ll mark that site as toxic.

  3. What I want to know is will this site somehow create opportunities for more accurate auto-tagging of mp3s? It’s my music mission in life.

  4. Discogs has been doing this for ages but the focus is to catalog all releases. You can track entire artists careers (ie all the bands they have been in or records they performed on), labels, etc. And you can buy and sell without FeeBay.

  5. This is awesome — or it could be, if Amazon starts using SoundUnwound as a source for better quality cover art scans than the crappy little images that Gracenote usually provides them with. Granted, Amazon has long had the ability for users to upload better scans — but Amazon then compresses the uploads and resizes them, causing degradation. Plus, some of the users’ skills at using a scanner have been questionable.

    SoundUnwound in contrast appears to have an editor reviewing submissions, and will make sensible decisions about when someone has in fact trumped Gracenote with a superior, better quality, higher-resolution (600 x 600 is what iTunes needs) scan. Based on my limited experience with SoundUnwound today so far, it appears that SoundUnwound does not compress or resize the cover art that users upload. Well done, Amazon!

  6. Update: Ok I spoke too soon about SoundUnwound not compressing user-uploaded cover art. A 186 KB cover I upped is now 103 KB on SoundUnwound. However, I am pleased to report that they kept the dimensions a device-friendly 600 x 600, and all in all it still looks good.

    Lesson is: upload to SoundUnwound with no compression to speak of (very best quality JPG), at a reasonable size (600 pixels x 600 pixels) and let SoundUnwound apply whatever compression they want so there will be only one level of JPG squiggles.

  7. Wouldn’t it be better to call it “SoundHeal” rather than “SoundUnwound”? Oh, I get it! They think that “sound” always rhymes with “wound”. I love heteronyms!

  8. Deckard68, an editor? Seriously? Probably more like a programmer with a few minutes of free time.
    Texasroute66: wound <== wind. You confuse me. This all seems like AllMusic meets Wikipedia but not as good as either.

  9. Meh, my formatting got swallowed. I meant wound comes from wind here, has nothing to do with injuries. What are you talking about?

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