Music diehards can attest that few life moments match the glory of seeing favorite artists bringing down the house in a live venue. On the flipside, these same music diehards can also attest that there are few live moments more disappointing than when favorite artists fail to match the stellar sound on display on their albums. Considering the price of tickets these days, it can be a rather expensive gamble. Enter ShowScoop Concerts, a free iPhone and iPod touch app (an Android version is coming soon) that centralizes concertgoers’ show reviews so that you won’t get burned by a bad live performance.
Doors Open at 8PM
ShowScoop Concerts prompts you to log in using your Facebook credentials, or by signing up for an account on the spot using the old school login known as email. Once you’re logged in, ShowScoop loads a sleek black interface with the app’s logo at the top, and “Updates,” “Search,” “Rate a Show,” “News,” and “Profile” in the menu bar at the bottom. Sandwiched between the two is the main content area in which you scroll through concert reviews—I’ll get to that in a bit.
“Search” lets you scour ShowScoop for an artist or user to follow. “Profile” displays your show reviews, photos, favorite shows, number of reviews, followers, and people you follow. “News” lists those who recently liked one of your reviews or began following you. “Updates” is a music-based Twitter-like stream where you followed and are followed. Note: ShowScoop Concerts simply lets you review performances. Unlike Songkick Concerts, ShowScoop Concerts doesn’t let you purchase tickets.
Pump Up the Jam
“Rate a Show” is the heart of the app. Tapping “Add Artist” lets you search for an artist name and select a performance date. I liked that I could rate concerts that I attended years ago. For example, I keyed in “The Dirtbombs” and scrolled down to a 7/12/2008 Afropunk performance in Brooklyn’s Fort Greene Park. After selecting the date, I could rate the show on a scale of 1-5 in five categories: Stage Presence, Crowd Interaction, Sound Quality, and Visual Effects. I thought sound quality was an odd category as that has more to do with the venue than the band—I’ve seen great live groups suffer from poor sound set ups. In fact, rating venues would be an excellent addition in any future update. ShowScoop Concerts includes a tour calendar, but you need to dig through menus to find it.
Next, I keyed in a short review blurb that detailed my experience. ShowScoop Concerts optionally lets you snap and upload concert photos. Bringing a finger to the “Post” icon makes a review go live. You can’t edit reviews once they’re posted, but you can delete them and re-review, should you flub something. Reviews can be shared on Facebook and Twitter.
The “Updates” screen resembles a Twitter-like post stream where reviews go after being submitted. Each post displays a user name, user photo, the name of the artist being reviewed, the number of “likes” that the review received from the ShowScoop community, and an artist’s overall rating. There’s a social aspect, too. You can follow users (or artists) that you like to keep tabs on their reviews. In fact, ShowScoop Concerts wisely includes a dedicated “Following” area, so that posters you’ve expressed interest in aren’t lost in the clutter.
Exit Stage Left
ShowScoop Concerts has room for growth, with more prominent tour date information and ticket purchasing being the most immediate and logical. Still, ShowScoop Concerts lets you comb the community to gather a sense of how performers execute in a live settings—I certainly see myself using the app during outdoor concerts season to avoid stinkers from bands that are unknown to me. Frequent concertgoers should give ShowScoop a spin.
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