New Look for Muusical

November 19th, 2014

Today we are launching a new version of We are also pleased to announce that Toms Rīts has joined our team. He has been working on this redesign with us for the last few months. Toms ( link to personal site ) is a designer and front-end developer currently living in Portugal. The new look and feel of muusical is largely Toms’ vision and I think you all will be very happy with his work.

Muusical was created with the goal of being the best place to find new music. Each day, our users vote and discuss songs they post, creating daily "Top 10" lists. Everyday brings a fresh set of music to listen to and talk about. There is so much music out there right now that finding what we really like can be daunting. We now have a new tool to make the search easier and really fun.

The focus of the redesign was to strengthen our community as well as give everyone a better listening experience. Here are the highlights of what is new:

  1. Major aesthetic changes across the entire site. We have changed everything from fonts, colors and backgrounds, to borders, sizes, and shapes. Every page and every sub-view has been updated for the new design.
  2. You may now sign in/sign up with your Facebook or Twitter accounts.
  3. We added spinning “records” when you play a song. Is it a gimmick? Sure, but we think it adds a nice feel to the experience.
  4. And playlists are now “playable”.

The new look: lighter, rounder, better.

The design changes focused on a lighter/rounder feel, a simpler color pallette and better readability. Views were made more compact without feeling crowded, giving more information at a glance on any page. We wanted a more useful but modern and attractive look. There is a nicer voting interface and much more attractive commenting forms and displays. We also added images to user accounts. The true value of muusical is the community forming around the music. With this in mind, we focused a great deal of the redesign on features and designs to enhance and simplify the community aspects of the site.

Sign up with Facebook or Twitter!

Adding the “sign up with Facebook/Twitter” button is a no-brainer at this point. It was something left out of the initial release, so we could get something out of the door more quickly and get real user feedback. We think that a user should have the option of linking existing accounts for ease and simplicity but also have the traditional email sign up for a user that either doesn’t have one of the social network accounts or prefers to keep their accounts separate. If you previously signed up for muusical with an email address, you may still link to your facebook and twitter accounts to make signing in easier in the future.

They spinnin, they spinnin!.

The "spinning" record animations might seem a little gimmicky but our experience and feedback from testers is that people like the visual feedback. It allows you to see which song is playing with a familiar visual cue.

Muusical's new playlist player.

The “playlist player” was the most aggressive part of our redesign. While muusical’s value is truly in the community and discussion, being able to listen to all the music you find is obviously vital to the experience. The new player allows for seamless listening to collections of music across all the platforms that we support. A different, compact view of the songs in the list are displayed in the new player with visual cues showing which song is currently playing. We’ve added some keyboard controls to let you play/pause with the space bar and skip forward and backward in the playlist using your keyboard’s arrow keys. Our goal was to make an attractive, useful player that has a good feel to it. The new player feels familiar and has an intuitive interaface for anyone that has used a digital music player. There are plans to expand the player's functionality but we wanted to get it in your hands to find what you wonderful folks like and dislike about the new player as well as what you hope to see in subsequent versions.

Toms and I really hope you like all the changes we’ve made. We also appreciate all the great music that you are finding for us! Finding new music is something we put tons of time into doing, normally on a daily basis. We hope that is a community and tool that makes this experience more fun and fruitful than it ever was before. If there is anything you’d like to tell us just drop a comment below or checkout our contact page for the best ways to connect with us.