Whether you are a music fanatic or only occasionally tune in to your favorite tracks, the chances are that you’ve suffered from earworm at one point or another. Earworm refers to the phenomenon when the tunes of a song play in your head but you just can’t figure out what song it is.
Many of us have been there, and we know how distressing it can be when you want to search, download, and play a song but don’t have a way of recognizing it. If you knew a bit of the lyrics and had access to an internet-enabled device, you would easily google the song to uncover its name and title.
But what if the song is composed in a foreign language? Worse yet, what if it’s an instrumental? Well, in such instances, your best bet would be to rely on a special app or tool that allows you to discover the title of the song. These special apps and software are known as music recognition services, and shall be the focus of this post.
Read on as we explore the ten most reliable music recognition software in the app market.
Shazam is the most popular music recognition app, and deservedly so. The software comes with a simple interface, making it incredibly user-friendly. To use the app, all you need to do is open it and tap the iconic blue button, and then your music will start playing.
Shazam comes with a Discover panel where you can catch up on the newly-released songs as well as keep tabs with the trending topics in the music world. On this panel, you can also search for your favorite music and hear the previews before adding the song to your favorites.
After tagging your music, the song is displayed on the My Shazam panel, where you can learn about it in detail. The software also implements a feature known as Shazam Charts, through which you can discover what most Shazam users are using the app for.
Last but not least, Shazam has an Auto Shazam feature that allows you to identify a song without necessarily opening the app.
2. Cortana on Windows 10
Cortana is a digital assistant product by Microsoft, which already speaks volumes about the reliability of this music recognition service. Cortana is compatible with Windows 10 and like most Microsoft products, this app is designed with the user in mind.
To identify your song through Cortana, open the software and ensure the voice feature is enabled. Then, say ‘’Hey Cortana,’’ and immediately follow with “What is this song?” After that, Cortana will listen to the music using the built-in microphones in your device and then tell you what song it is.
Besides its ease of use, most Cortana users also laud the app for its ability to recognize the music that’s playing on your PC directly. You only have to ensure that your headphones aren’t plugged in to allow Cortana to pick up the audio from your PC’s external speakers.
Midomi is a web-based music recognition software that allows you to ID your favorite music by singing or humming the song into your device’s microphone.
One of the coolest things about Midomi is that it enables users to contribute to the database. The app comes with an online recording studio where users can create their own profiles, record themselves singing in any language, and add the song to the database. That significantly enhances the efficiency with which a person can locate music on the platform.
And as your song recordings show up on the tool’s top search results, your profile also appears alongside the song, which is useful in enhancing your visibility on the site. If you’re looking for a music recognition service that also allows you to network with other online users, then look no further than Midomi.
SoundHound closely rivals Shazam in various aspects, including popularity as well as the ease and efficiency of use. Just like Shazam, SoundHound has an iconic orange button on the homepage that you can use to start tagging and playing your music.
What gives SoundHound an edge over Shazam is the fact that the software supports voice controls. After opening the app, all you have to do is say “OK, Hound,’’ and SoundHound will allow you to seamlessly tag your song as well as perform other tasks hands-free.
There is a Charts tab where you can play samples of the songs you’ve tagged on various platforms, such as Spotify Premium and YouTube. After tagging your favorite music, you can read the lyrics, add the song to your favorites, or even purchase the song.
Another outstanding feature of SoundHound is the fact that it can ID hummed music. However, one common drawback with the software is the numerous pop-up ads which you can only remove if you upgrade to the SoundHound Infinite package.
5. Alexa Music Commands
Amazon Alexa is one of the most popular products by Amazon, which repeatedly features among the top sound identification tools. The product is mostly used in industries like home automation.
Presently, you can use Amazon Alexa to perform over 3,000 commands, including playing music hands-free. To use Alexa Music Commands to play your favorite song, just say “Alexa, play some music” and the app will get to business. But that’s not the only way you can benefit from this intuitive app.
If you’re struggling to remember the title of a song, just issue the “Alexa, play that song that goes…….’’ command. For instance, you can say “Alexa, play that song that goes I want to be where the sun warms the sky’’, and Alexa will immediately play La Isla Bonita by Madonna.
6. Musixmatch Lyrics
Musixmatch and Spotify have had a long relationship, where the two were used together to offer lyrics. Unlike most sound identification tools out there, Musixmatch is almost exclusively lyrics-based.
Some users may consider that a drawback, considering the app doesn’t focus on popular songs. However, this sound identification tool comes with plenty of redeeming features. First, you can use it to find out about new song releases. And secondly, it’s highly reliable.
To use Musixmatch, you’ll need to play the songs from your device library through the app to see the title, lyrics, and other song details. The software allows its users to create a profile from where they can contribute lyrics to the database. And after watching song lyrics on Musixmatch, you can go ahead and save them for reference offline.
7. Google Assistant
Google Assistant is one of the most efficient sound recognition apps, and can ID a song in less than seven seconds. The tool is highly compatible with Android devices, while iOS users can use the app after downloading it.
Google Assistant also ranks among the sound identification tools that are easiest to use. To learn more about a song, you’ll first need to launch the app by pressing the microphone icon in Google search. Alternatively, you can simply say “OK, Google”. After launching Google Assistant, issue a command like “identify this song…”, and the app will get to work.
The app recognizes music along with its title, artist, album, release date, lyrics, and genre. It also offers quick access to relevant platforms like Play Music and YouTube.
To use Tunatic, you’ll first need to download and install the app on your PC. You can then play your favorite song to the earphone and automatically search the music.
The Tunatic dashboard has an interrogation mark that you click on to prompt the tool to search for your desired song through its database. Tunatic will bring up complete search results, detailing the song title, lyrics, artist, album, and other relevant details.
And after successfully identifying your song, the software allows you to search for the music on other platforms like iTunes. You can also search for the song’s ringtone or look up the lyrics on Google.
Tunatic is compatible with both Mac and Windows OS. However, common drawbacks include the limited number of songs in the software’s database and the fact that it doesn’t work offline.
As the name suggests, Musipedia assumes the format of Wikipedia but specializes in music search.
The app utilizes the Melodyhound, which is a special melody search engine that you can use to find all kinds of songs from the Musipedia’s database. Through Melodyhound, users can identify songs by simply playing the melody on a piano keyboard, whistling the song to their computer, or tapping the song rhythms on a computer keyboard. Melodyhound also makes it easy to identify music using the Parsons code.
Musipedia also features a Melodic Contour Search function where you can easily locate a song even if all you know is how the tune changes. Another way you can search for music on Musipedia is by using the app’s rhythm-based Query by Tapping music search method.
WatZatSong has a huge database where you can search for a song whose title and lyrics you can’t remember.
To use the app, record or upload a sample of the song by clicking on the “Post A Sample” button that’s located on top of the page. Though WatZatSong is typically reliable, sometimes your search may take days depending on how specific it is. To improve the speed with which the software finds your song, you can stick the sample on the homepage by using the “Top of the list” feature which is available on the sample page.
And like many other music recognition apps that we’ve reviewed here, WatZatSong allows its users to contribute to the database.
When a piece of music hums in your head but you can’t seem to figure it out, it’s reassuring to know that there are apps which allow you to find the song fast. Always remember the unwritten rule when choosing a music recognition software – the tool should feature maximum songs in its database. The ability to work offline, as well as the inclusion of voice features, are pleasant add-ons.