By Latoya Gay, Contributing Writer, HorizonVU Music
The typical music lover’s need to discover new music and gain insight on recently released albums is fairly common. People enjoy reading up on what others think about an album to better inform their own opinion. Additionally, album reviewers are great sources for unearthing underground up and coming artists that deserve more exposure.
In this article, we’ll dive into how you can become an influential online album reviewer so that you can set up your own central hub where people can learn about your thoughts on music and different artists. You’ll help new artists gain publicity and connect fans to music that inspires them and gives them joy.
Set up a Blog
Blogs are great online spaces that allow for full control over content and layout. You could set everything up on a social media platform such as Facebook, but you’d be limited with what you can post, and you’d be competing with all the other distractions that the platform provides.
Using a service such as WordPress, you can use themes and a few graphics to set up your blog’s appearance in next to no time. You can create whatever content you like in video and text format, releasing as much content as you want, whenever you want, there’s no limitation.
Give your blog a unique name and think your branding through so that you become an authority figure in the online album reviewing sphere. If you plan on being a generic album reviewer, adding anything and everything from all genres, go for something broad. However, if you plan on only reviewing specific genres, try to focus your design and content on that area. Blogs are also effective for building a social following, due to their easy navigation and widgets.
Artists regularly release new material, but it’s important to remember your position as a reviewer before you post to your blog and social channels. You should approach each piece in an unbiased manner, even if you love the artist’s previous work. Just because an artist you like has released something new doesn’t mean it’s going to be any good. Let the music do the talking and then express what you honestly feel to be true in your review.
Not every album or song an artist sets out into the world is going to be a hit; this has been proven countless times before. If you’re following starts to feel as though you’re plugging an artist blindly, they will stop visiting your blog and find a new review site.
Dig into the Underground Scenes
If you want to gain the respect of artists and real music fanatics in your demographic, then you’ll want to dig deep into the underground scenes of the genres you review. Give newer acts some exposure by reviewing their latest releases. You will gain more followers and do more good in your community this way, as people will like the fact that you’re bringing to their music libraries something different and interesting.
Finding newer artists to review will also make you feel great knowing you’re helping them break out and gain more publicity through your following. Mix things up by reviewing artists of all calibers; you’ll be respected and provide people with a unique and varied experience for finding out about new albums.
Sourcing New Music
If you want to stay ahead of your competitors, arm yourself with as much new material as you can take on. Follow popular playlists on Spotify and YouTube in your genre, as curators are always updating these lists with new artists and songs, which will help you discover new albums and releases to review. You can even bring your work with you as you go about your day, using social media to keep a connection to your readers and give them recent updates about your passion.
That being said, be sure to find a good Virtual Private Network to run your activity through, the last thing you want is to undergo a hacking attack while sourcing new music. Review services such as Secure Thoughts can help you make this kind of decision much easier. The main takeaway is that you need to protect your investments as you explore the online world of music.
Some music fanatics prefer the old-school way of discovering new music, which is to go out to shows and hear it performed live. This does provide the potential for a more in-depth review since you can potentially talk to the artists themselves and gain insight on their albums and releases. You can even include interviews in your reviews if you meet up with the act. If you aren’t camera shy and feel creative enough, try recording video interviews and album reviews together.