Attic full review

Who doesn’t love a little musical nostalgia? With Attic, what’s old is new again on your iPhone and iPod touch—for better and for worse.

Attic taps into your music’s metadata to select your 15 least-listened-to albums; it then lines them up in front of you for perusal. If any albums strike your fancy, you can select and drag them onto the record player to create a custom playlist. If you’re at a loss, the app’s magic wand button will select a few for you at random.

The app is great for people with musical attention deficit disorder, or those with such a vast collection that it’s hard to remember all that’s available. I, for example, was delighted to listen to *NSYNC’s No Strings Attached for the first time since high school. Ah, the good old days.

Well, it was good after I figured everything out with Attic. Make sure to read the app’s description in the App Store before you dive in, because there are zero instructions on the app itself, and things aren’t at all intuitive. The “wordless” strategy looks good on an app like this, but I was really wishing for one of those magical, hidden “i” icons for a little guidance.

If you change your mind about an album, press the eject button and tap which albums to remove. Unfortunately, you can only remove them from your playlist, not from the app entirely. As far as I can tell, the only way to get different albums into Attic is to listen to the old ones until they’re no longer in your bottom 15.

This is fine if you want to make a game out of it, but in my iPod at least, there really are some albums that I just do not want to listen to. Maybe that’s a sign that I should trim the fat a little, but with 4GB of storage left on my mobile device, what’s the rush? Maybe Attic is secretly telling me to get my act together, but I don’t want to hear it.

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