Spotify is known for its many algorithmically-powered features, but this may be the most interesting one to date. A journalist at Music Ally spotted a Spotify drum n’ bass playlist that is being auto-mixed, with beat-matching, automatically – even on shuffle.
This isn’t the crossfading feature that’s long been a part of the Spotify app, it’s a true DJ-style transition system (almost) that appears to be happening on-the-fly, using artificial intelligence. Here’s how to do it: “Using its [Spotify] 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.”
As you can hear, they’re definitely not A-level transitions. Even so, the Spotify app appears to be analyzing the beat of the following track, selecting a drop-in point, and matching the two tempos…just like a human DJ would. And it’s doing pretty well for being new to the game.
Given the massive data set and AI firepower at its disposal, it’s entirely likely this feature could hit the mainstream sooner rather than later. Spotify already has a “Party Mode” feature with similar capabilities, as well as playlists that match their tempo to the speed of your run.
According to Spotify, “We are always testing new products and experiences, but have no further news to share at this time.” Music Ally suggests Spotify may be working with auto-mixing startup Pacemaker, but no confirmation is available at this time.
DJs, better keep your eyes and ears open. The robots are coming for your jobs, too.