Helsinki's Clerkd Music App Plugs You Into The Local Beat

    Helsinki has a new music app that’s becoming the talk of the town. Started by a group of students from Helsinki, Sydney, and St. Petersburg, Clerkd launched last week to help you find and play new music.

    The app mixes together music discovery with a local angle, allowing you to follow your friends and tastemakers, like bands, blogs or whoever you want. On top of that the map view lets you see whats popular nearby by giving each genre its own color. After selecting a location, you can just press play to get a playlist what music has been played in that general location though Clerkd.

    “What I’m interested in is what people are listening to in Williamsburg and what people are listening to Sydney,” says Kiki Ylimutka, cofounder of Clerkd. “Malcom (another co-founder) is Australian, and theres an amazing music industry there that usually doesn’t get exposed in Europe unless they make it big in the UK. We dont have time to read blogs, but what we want to do is figure out what people are listening to.”

    The app plugs into a number of music services, including Spotify, Soundcloud, Jamendo, VK, iTunes, and more to come soon. I’ve always got my ears plugged into Spotify when walking around town, but with deeper catalog by also plugging into Soundcloud on top of nice social features, Clerkd might become my new go-to.

    To the right is a current screenshot around the ArcticStartup office in Helsinki. We’re on the red edge of apparently the Motown district of Helsinki, with Aretha Franklin and The Supremes being our local beat. Surrounded by us is the green sea of the Punavuori neighborhood’s vibe of hipster tracks, which doesn’t come as a surprise if you know the area.

    We’ve covered a Swedish startup that’s doing something similar, but currently Malmö-based Tunaspot is only available as a Spotify app. They’ve hinted at a mobile client for some time now, but right now their desktop Spotify app seems to be working out for them.

    The Clerkd team have published the first free open source binding for Libspotify on the Xamarin.iOS platform for developers to use. In the future they will be connecting new services, adding features, as well as develop web and Android versions.

    Additionally they’re building analytics tools for the music industry to help artists and managers find where their fans actually are, so they can more accurately target shows and promotions.

    Clerkd has the perfect test user on the music industry side. One of Clerkd’s cofounders is Hannah Toivonen from the band Phantom, which sprang onto our radar roughly a year ago after getting noticed by The XX. She’s now left the business side of Clerkd, but still works with the company as an evangelist.

    “When people started tweeting and blogging about Phantom we spent two days on the road retweeting and reblogging to boost the buzz,” says Ylimutka “One thing we were thinking about was ‘where are these people?’ Thats where the geolocation idea came from. The fans are the ones that make you your living.”

    Clerkd can be found in the App Store.