This app pairs album art to Spotify playlists
Spotify has changed the way we buy music. For most people that simply means that we don’t buy music, but for anyone that still does, this is a rather neat tool to let you try before you buy.
Record Player is a web app that lets you snap a photo of some album art and then have Spotify find the music in question. It’s a bit like a more colourful kind of QR code, really.
For some, this also might seem about as useful as a QR code. After all, is it really that much easier to snap a photo of an album, rather than typing in its name? All the same, there’s some pretty neat technology rumbling under the surface: built-in Glitch, the software works by sending the picture to Google Vision API which then returns its best guess as to what album you’ve seen.
This seems pretty reliable, ably recognising albums even without text present, like The Best of Blur, which simply features cartoon pictures of the band.
This also means you could do your own album dress up party, and have Google Vision API judge your performance. I couldn’t justify the costume or makeup budget to arrange my own photo shoot of Destroyer by Kiss, but I was able to see what Record Player thought my Alphr profile picture was:
It picked the album Standing on the Shoulders of Giants by Oasis. It justifies this because Google Vision thought “shoulder” apparently, which is a very literal take. In other words, when Google Vision API doesn’t recognise a specific album cover, it seems to fall back on standard image recognition. There is a shoulder in this picture, therefore it must have shoulder in the title. you’d have thought Ride a White Swan by T Rex would be a better bet, mind.
Still, the picture of my cat, Humphries, came up with an appropriate result:
This seems a little mocking, considering Humphries’ limited IQ (he once got a bowl stuck to his collar), but it does give an interesting insight into how the technology works when it doesn’t immediately recognise a specific album.
You can try Record Player for yourself here.