When it comes to streaming songs, there is no such thing as a free lunch. Or is there? Sure, streaming services like Spotify have free tiers now but they are laden with frequent ads and the mobile apps are limited to a point where you can’t even manage your now playing queue.
On the desktop, SoundCloud and Grooveshark are two great options. They are ad free and you don’t even need to sign up for an account to play some music. And if you’re into long DJ sets/mixes or electronic/trance music, SoundCloud users upload some of the best music around.
But what if you want to listen to music on the go, when you don’t always have connectivity? Check out the apps listed below.
For streaming songs, SoundCloud’s official app is good enough. It’s fast and reliable. You can log in, record a clip and upload it to your profile all from the app. Playlists, comments, likes, and more are all supported.
But the app doesn’t have pro features like downloading songs. SoundCloud’s iPhone app was updated with a gorgeous one handed interface recently but the update hasn’t made it to Android yet.
If the uploader allows for it, you can download songs to play offline. Now, a lot of users, especially the official accounts of mainstream artists have this option disabled. But you’ll easily find music like cover songs, DJ mixes, or trance tracks available for download. As the official app doesn’t support download anymore, you’ll have to look elsewhere.
SoundLoader is your best shot. The app works in conjunction with the official app or the website. So open the SoundCloud app, navigate to the song or album you want to download, tap the Share button and choose SoundLouder. All the songs will immediately start downloading in the background.
In the Share menu, you can set defaults. So if you select SoundCloud as Always, just tapping the share icon the next time will start the download.
If for some reason you don’t like the official app or want to manage everything – playing, uploading, comments, downloads – from one app, try My Melody Box. Although the app isn’t nearly as good looking or intuitive as the official app, it does work.
It’s better these days; Grooveshark has settled a lot of cases and lot of songs are now officially available but its battle is far from over. This is also a reason why you won’t find a Grooveshark app in the Play Store. The official app was removed years ago and some awesome third party apps were pushed off soon after.
But thanks to Android’s openness, you can still listen to Grooveshark’s library on your phone. All you need to do is enable Unknown Sources from Privacy settings and install an app.
You begin by searching for a song or an artist. Tapping a song merely adds it to the queue. Go to the Queue tab to start playing. You can also browse lists and playlists or create your own radio station.
You can even import your Grooveshark playlists after logging into the site. The app is completely ad free but downloading songs isn’t supported.