I listen to a lot of net radio, since I’m on the computer a lot and a crave variety in my music. One of my main sources was Netscape Radio, which apparently is now AOL Radio. For a while now, I have experienced problems with my Radio@Netscape player, where it basically won’t start. When it was working, I saw occasional ads for unlimited listening at AOL Radio, and since they’re the same company (until Time Warner gives AOL the boot) I thought I’d check it out. Turns out AOL has the same stations and an interface that looks identical, but offers unlimited listening (Netscape cut you off after a couple hours). The new interface appears to be pure web-based and launches in a popup, unlike Netscape’s, which required a separate downloadable executable. Unfortunately for now, Firefox is not supported, but they promise it will be next month. So it’s time to dust off your IE.
I listen to it often due to the good selection of stations and the ability to rate songs. I have no idea how much my vote counts, but I like to feel listened to (hence this blog). In addition, they link the artist, song, and album to the AOL’s music page which licenses data from the All Music Guide, making it easy to learn about artists I’m not familiar with. My staples are Indie Rock Mix and Electronica, but other notable stations include Melancholia, for when your misery wants company; The WB Radio, the music of Smallville; Xtreme Alt Rock, hard but not boring; and a variety of single-artist stations for bands like The Ramones, The Doors, Yes, and others. Plus just about every other style of music you can think of, and several promotional stations for things like the Warp Tour and Live 8. Overall, a good one-stop music shop.