Looking back over what I've previously written about Last.fm is a little, well, shameful. Since as long ago as July 2015 I've been noting how the service has a large void: analog music. I love having a record of my listening habits, but that record currently lacks any music consumed on CD or vinyl which skews it quite heavily towards bands I'm just getting to know, rather than incorporating those I've listened to for years.
The solutions to this glaring issue have grown up a little since 2015. I've previously mentioned the Universal Scrobbler, which has become more feature rich than ever, supporting bulk scrobbling as well as integrating database searching from both Discogs and Last.fm to make scrobbling entire albums as easy as single tracks. There is also now a healthy competitor in the form of the Open Web Scrobbler, a brain child of Github and Reddit which does a fantastic job of letting you fine tune your listening record. It also has some surprisingly powerful little features, including the ability to customise a Scrobble's time stamp which then self-updates with each tracks duration to keep it effectively in-sync.
Despite that, manually entering an entire album in the OWScrobbler is time consuming and prone to errors. Luckily, Last.fm does have an option to delete scrobbles, but still it was enough of an irritation for me to rarely use the service for anything more than a lone track here and there. Whole albums on vinyl or CD? To much effort.
Today, though, Last.fm released my "2016 in Review", driving home which artists and albums have mostly been lost to the void. I briefly looked at API hooks to develop a self-hosted solution, but was quickly reminded that Wordpress remains a barrier. Back to looking longingly at the Universal Scrobbler's Premium service then I guess. But hold on... something else seems to have changed since 2015. Back then I wrote how I couldn't "justify the price" of a premium subscription. Well, either the price has come down or my definition of expensive has changed, because a life time membership only costs $4.99 (USD), which currently seems very affordable.
It's half an hour later and, as far as I'm concerned, I've already made my money back. I've scrobbled several albums I own on vinyl multiple times over, effectively updating my listening records for each artist for this year. There's plenty more I still need to add, but I can now take five minutes out of a day and fire in a months worth of listening habits that would otherwise have stayed lost to the void. As a result I'm hoping my "2017 in Review" will be a much more interesting and balanced affair.