(Hypebot) — Amazon Music has made its 100 million track catalog available free to all Amazon Music subscribers, but a key feature turns the service into a frustrating experience.
I’ve been trying out music services other than Spotify as part of a week-long exploration and dedicated the last 24 hours to Amazon’s new free service.
To get the labels and music publishers to agree to a free version of Amazon Music, the streamer added what can best be described as a permanent shuffle.
You can’t listen to an album in order or choose a song and hear it instantly.
In the middle of listening to an album, unwanted songs – sometimes by the same artist and sometimes not – are algorithmically inserted. Free versions of Spotify may occasionally insert an ad, but they leave every album intact, as the artist and producer intended it to be.
Some will argue that many music fans don’t listen to full albums, so a little shuffling doesn’t matter. But 10 songs from Taylor Swift’s new Midnight album in the Top 10 at the same time negate that argument.
With this free service, Amazon Music has taken streaming in the wrong direction. In fact, if this were your first introduction to music streaming, you’re probably dusting off your CD player.