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Spotify is testing playlists that are auto-mixed – even when on shuffle

Here’s something to try on Spotify, if you have a few minutes. Using its desktop client, turn off the ‘crossfade’ feature in advanced settings, turn shuffle mode on, and play the first track on this Drum & Bass Fix playlist, and see what happens with the transition to the next track.

For us, at least, the tracks are being mixed together as if by a DJ. This isn’t the ‘crossfade’ feature that’s been part of Spotify for a long time, either: it’s proper beat-matched mixing, and it works even when you’re shuffling the playlist – so the mixing appears to be happening on the fly.

This is something new, although it’s not the first time Spotify has dabbled in mixing technology. In 2015 it launched a beat-matching ‘Party’ mode in its mobile app, with a 120-track playlist from Diplo. However, Music Ally understands that the feature we spotted this week is a separate, new project that’s in early testing.

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Pacemaker wants to create a platform for legal DJ mixes – or ‘metamixes’

You may know Swedish startup Pacemaker best for its excellent DJ app, which launched in early 2014 as a way to use Spotify’s catalogue as a source for your mixes.

Since then, it has made some interesting moves into artificial intelligence, with a built-in AI DJ called ‘Mållgan’ that helps music fans choose and mix tracks.

Nominated for a Music Ally Digital Music Award last year, Pacemaker has since become part of the first cohort of the Techstars Music accelerator. But earlier this month, it launched what might be its most ambitious feature yet.

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Mixcloud has attracted 100k DJs so far

UK streaming music service Mixcloud has announced that more than 100,000 people have uploaded mixes – or cloudcasts in its terminology – since its launch in March 2009. Co-founder Nikhil Shah tells Music Week that 90% of the site’s audience are aged 18-34, and that it has plans to launch premium paid services in the future (currently it is free and ad-supported)…