Have you ever had a song stuck in your head and were driven nuts by the fact that you couldn't remember its name or who sang it? Did you happen to catch a tune on the radio or while you were in bar and wanted to know what it was, so that you can find it and play it again at home? Back in the day, I used to try and remember a few of the lyrics, search them on Google at home and hopefully find the name of the track, but today there are far easier ways. Nowadays, all you need is an Android phone and one of the apps listed below, and you can instantly find out almost every detail about any song/artist that you are looking for.
Shazam is the most popular song identification app, and for good reason. This tool is really good at its job and isn't only capable of telling you what music you're listening to, but also what TV show is playing in the background. The application is the fastest one of its kind, so it won't take long for it to identify the music that's playing and give you a lot of details about it. The always-on feature can be really helpful if you're in a bar that always has good music or just found a new awesome radio station, but you need to turn it on manually and then reactivate it every few hours (as the application automatically disables it after a while). Shazam can be connected to Facebook and Twitter, works with Pandora or Spotify and gives you direct YouTube links to the songs it identifies. Another piece of good news is that the free version of the application has the same functionality as the premium one, the only advantage paying users get is that they don't see any ads.
Music ID is a lesser known app, but that doesn't mean it's not as good as the other ones on this list. Actually, besides the easy to use UI and powerful listening and song identifying capabilities, this tool also offers something that Shazam doesn't: the ability to perform text-based (lyrics-based) searches. For any song that you tag, the application will offer links to YouTube videos, related tunes and the full lyrics. However, unlike with Shazam and SoundHound, you won't be able to use it for karaoke as the lyrics aren't displayed in real-time. Lastly, the tool offers integration with social networks but doesn't support radio services, such as Pandora or Spotify. From what I've read on the Internet, some users complained about the app's inability to identify certain songs (based on real-time sound recordings), but it worked just fine for me.
SoundHound has been the second best in its field for quite a while now. This application offers fewer features than Shazam (such as the ability to see the upcoming events where a selected band or artist will perform), but they are not actually that important so you won't really feel the difference. Unfortunately, you have to be at least a decent singer for the app to identify the song that you are humming, so (for I have a terrible voice), I couldn't successfully use this feature. Just like with Shazam, the application lets you tag tunes, displays real-time lyrics when you want it to and offers you a chart with the hottest songs of the moment.
MusiXmatch is a decent app that will help you find the songs you are looking for through sound recognition or by using lyrics-based searches. Even though it used to be not that great, the newer versions of the application have brought major improvements, and it now offers full support for services like Spotify, Deezer, Rdio, Rhapshody or Play Music. Another reason why I actually like this tool is that it can work together with a large number of audio players and offer you an easy way to see the lyrics of the tunes you are listening to.
Hound is a little bit different than the other tools on this list. Created by the same guys who make SoundHound, this tool will offer you a lot of details about any artist, band or song title that you are searching for. The cool thing about it is that it's designed for voice searches, so you don't actually have to waste time typing names in or figuring out the correct spelling of certain words. This application is great for whenever you want to know more about a band or when you are looking for a song from a specific artist and you can't remember its name. Moreover, Hound also allows you to quickly share the name of any band or song that you feel is worth mentioning with your friends on Facebook and Twitter.