Another app that proves that our local music and the music we listen to online are becoming one and the same. GrooveWalrus is a free music desktop client that connects to your Last.fm and Grooveshark accounts and provides instant access to these on the desktop.
But GrooveWalrus can also scan your local music collection and let you create playlists that combine local tracks, tracks from Last.fm and Grooveshark into a single playlist. It will, for example, display Last.fm information, such as artists biographies and album art, for tracks that reside on your hard drive.
GrooveWalrus is built on a plugin architecture, with a host of plugins available that extend its functionality (e.g. a Lyrics plugin, a web remote plugin that can serve your music over the web, and a host of others). GrooveWalrus is multiplatform (Windows/Linux).
- It works: Last.fm, Grooveshark, and your local music are indeed brought together into a single player.
- Plugins: extend this software’s functionality, adding Lyrics, a webserver, music selection via graphs, and a host of other interesting features.
- Desktop integration: in the sense that album art is displayed on the desktop, and a tiny “minimode” player is provided on the desktop via a plugin.
- Zongdora: a plugin that grabs recommendations from Pandora!
- Download music: it is possible to download all new music to a folder of your choice on your hard drive.
- Buggy: feels like a work in process at times. The plugins, especially, tend to simply not work or display sparse dialogs without explanation of what they (or you) are supposed to do.
- Unintuitive interface: it took me half an hour or so to figure out where to insert my Last.Fm credentials and how to import my main Grooveshark playlist. Ok I exaggerate a little bit (but not much). It also seems like the interface simply grew organically and is quite in need of some cleaning up.
The verdict: I really like this software. It is obvious that a lot of care and energy have gone into it. It doesn’t provide the most intuitive and seamless user experience, but I am betting that it will only get better with time, with some of the issues mentioned above eventually being taken care of. GrooveWalrus is definitely a keeper.
Video of this software in action:
Version tested: 0.349
Compatibility: Windows (requires Internet Explore on your PC with flash plugin installed). Linux.
Go to the program home page to download the latest version (approx 9.94 megs).