Spotify stops shuffling album tracks by default after Adele requests the change

midian182

Posts: 7,293   +65
Staff member
What just happened? Have you noticed that Spotify no longer shuffles albums by default anymore? If, for some reason, this is an annoyance, blame Adele. The singer apparently requested that the platform play an album's tracks in the order artists intended, and Spotify has complied.

As reported by the BBC, Adele appears to have made the request directly to Spotify, with the change taking place following the release of the Grammy-winning singer's album '30.' She explained her reasoning in a tweet that read: "This was the only request I had in our ever changing industry! We don't create albums with so much care and thought into our track listing for no reason. Our art tells a story and our stories should be listened to as we intended."

Spotify replied to Adele's tweet with the message "Anything for you."

The Shuffle Toggle button, which looks like two arrows crossing each other, has now been removed from an album's page, meaning that tracks will complete in order when hitting Play. Users can, however, still shuffle tracks by going to the Now Playing View and selecting the Shuffle Toggle from there.

"As Adele mentioned, we are excited to share that we have begun rolling out a new Premium feature that has been long requested by both users and artists to make play the default button on all albums," Chris Macowski, the head of music communications at Spotify, confirmed to The Verge.

Adele's first album in six years saw 60.7 million streams globally on the first day it was available, with the song Easy on Me now holding the Spotify record for most listens in a single day.

This is the second significant change Spotify has undergone recently. The company finally rolled out its live lyrics feature globally last week, allowing users to see a track's words scroll across the screen in real-time as it plays. Spotify will be discontinuing the "Behind the Lyrics" feature as a result of Live Lyrics' introduction.

Permalink to story.

 

Phaetos

Posts: 44   +43
Not really her decision to control in which order the listener enjoys the music. If someone wants to listen to the tracks on shuffle and out of order, their choice. They shouldn't be forced to find a shuffle option solely based on the fact that "Adele said so". Make music and stay out of our personal decisions.
 

Guberian

Posts: 121   +152
On mobile they always add their reccomendations to a playlist that you create which is just annoying.
 

Dimitriid

Posts: 1,338   +2,625
Not really her decision to control in which order the listener enjoys the music. If someone wants to listen to the tracks on shuffle and out of order, their choice. They shouldn't be forced to find a shuffle option solely based on the fact that "Adele said so". Make music and stay out of our personal decisions.

This is typical of the old ways of doing things: Her default and the default of many artists is that they could create a concept album if they wanted, but it couldn't be a single, full LP length song because the radio still wanted singles of about 2 to 4 minutes long best, because they need to run commercials in between.

So we're talking about Adele discussing what was common and popular knowledge born in an era over 50 years ago with LPs and radio, today modern artists are quickly adapting to having longer songs if their vision for a "story" doesn't works under 5 minutes, mostly because unlike Adele most musicians today don't actually *need* to follow the radio formula: they don't need the full record to be "experienced" since chances are that will never happen so they adapt and learn to be more cohesive and focus on "singles" instead of "full albums" now and honestly works out a lot better.
 

Phaetos

Posts: 44   +43
This is typical of the old ways of doing things: Her default and the default of many artists is that they could create a concept album if they wanted, but it couldn't be a single, full LP length song because the radio still wanted singles of about 2 to 4 minutes long best, because they need to run commercials in between.

So we're talking about Adele discussing what was common and popular knowledge born in an era over 50 years ago with LPs and radio, today modern artists are quickly adapting to having longer songs if their vision for a "story" doesn't works under 5 minutes, mostly because unlike Adele most musicians today don't actually *need* to follow the radio formula: they don't need the full record to be "experienced" since chances are that will never happen so they adapt and learn to be more cohesive and focus on "singles" instead of "full albums" now and honestly works out a lot better.
That's fine, let them create whatever they want. This is just another infringement on letting people have an individual thought in their own lives and listening experience. The fact that Spotify made this change specifically because she asked for it is ridiculous. Just another good reason that I canceled my Spotify along with all the other crap out there that Spotify pays pennies in royalties to artists and allows for fraud on their system for people to increase their listen times and get paid.
 

Plutoisaplanet

Posts: 571   +924
I think this is fine. You click to play an album, then open up your now playing and hit shuffle. I'm not sure what the problem is to default to playing an album's songs in order. If you want to listen to an entire album anyways, you're probably invested in it enough to want to listen to it in the original order.
 

rrwards

Posts: 206   +375
That's fine, let them create whatever they want. This is just another infringement on letting people have an individual thought in their own lives and listening experience. The fact that Spotify made this change specifically because she asked for it is ridiculous. Just another good reason that I canceled my Spotify along with all the other crap out there that Spotify pays pennies in royalties to artists and allows for fraud on their system for people to increase their listen times and get paid.

"They're infringing on my rights to individual thought in my life"

An album is no longer shuffling by default, calm down.
 

m4a4

Posts: 2,615   +3,225
TechSpot Elite
I think this is fine. You click to play an album, then open up your now playing and hit shuffle. I'm not sure what the problem is to default to playing an album's songs in order. If you want to listen to an entire album anyways, you're probably invested in it enough to want to listen to it in the original order.
Yeah. Why it would default an album to shuffle in the first place baffles me.

That said, as a PC user, I find the Spotify webapp to be junk, to the point where I actively try not to use it.
 

mcclurken

Posts: 7   +32
TechSpot Elite
It's about time. I'm surprised to find so many dissenting opinions in the comments. I get that some people like shuffle, and I don't have a problem with what other people like, but I only like it on a playlist. I agree with Adele on this one. It's really just bad UX which could be fixed with putting the shuffle button right next to the play through button. But if they can't figure that out then at least let the default be what it's been since music recording began. It took me an embarrassing number of frustrating moments until I figured out how to play the songs in order. Again, it's a UX problem not a problem of anybody forcing anybody to do anything; Just make it obvious to the average user how to get what they want and reasonable people won't care much what the default is.
 

RudyBob

Posts: 315   +302
Well if there is no quick save on games and they must be played like the artists intended what's the rumpus here?
 

PEnnn

Posts: 642   +626
And now some people have a "god given right" to assume that Spotify should play Spotify's own music lists.....they way those people they really like it.

Get a life and hit shuffle, sheesh!!

Everybody has a god given right lately to someone else's property or business model
 

kiwigraeme

Posts: 665   +507
Don't have spotify - let's see how "The Wall" sounds shuffled

"tear down the wall, tear down the wall"
"what's that up in the sky mummy?"

Whoa just like a new edgy TV series - so deep man
If only spotify could add a million edits , some shaky hand holds , and 1040 spins - to blow our minds how cool and 12th level it is .
Get with the new -Chevy Impalas are small practical cars

I made an edit because I said Ford Impala - a genuine mistake - for a carhead this mistake to inconceivable to do on purpose - I just remember an article how the modern impala was an abuse of the name - someone down the road from me has a '58 - as it lumbers or glides your choice around
 
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prorab2

Posts: 6   +3
100% support this, many artists deliberately choose the order of their songs to be enjoyed. Why shuffle would be the default for an album anyway? I get that many use it, but default, really?!
I'm pretty sure it was made to force you buy a premium subscription.
 

wiyosaya

Posts: 6,756   +5,198
Spotify sounds like they are spinning this. Of course they were going to release it anyway. And pigs fly, too!
 

Phaetos

Posts: 44   +43
I think this is fine. You click to play an album, then open up your now playing and hit shuffle. I'm not sure what the problem is to default to playing an album's songs in order. If you want to listen to an entire album anyways, you're probably invested in it enough to want to listen to it in the original order.
"The Shuffle Toggle button, which looks like two arrows crossing each other, has now been removed from an album's page, meaning that tracks will complete in order when hitting Play. Users can, however, still shuffle tracks by going to the Now Playing View and selecting the Shuffle Toggle from there."

The point is that they made a change to the basic functionality of their system based solely on a single artist's demand because people were listening it the album outside of they way she thinks you should.
 

p51d007

Posts: 2,895   +2,274
I've never used shuffle. But, if I were spotify, I'd tell her to either like how we play your album, or we'll just drop you.
 

mrtraver

Posts: 500   +265
Glad to see this. So many albums that I listen to tell a story.

And although Spotify is playing this up like they did it because Adele asked, I doubt I will ever be convinced that is the sole reason. Fortuitous timing for them to announce a change, but this had to have been in the works for a while.
 
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Plutoisaplanet

Posts: 571   +924
"The Shuffle Toggle button, which looks like two arrows crossing each other, has now been removed from an album's page, meaning that tracks will complete in order when hitting Play. Users can, however, still shuffle tracks by going to the Now Playing View and selecting the Shuffle Toggle from there."

The point is that they made a change to the basic functionality of their system based solely on a single artist's demand because people were listening it the album outside of they way she thinks you should.
Whoop dee do da. It takes an extra tap or two only for albums to listen to it on shuffle. Not exactly "the basic functionality". Besides, the album is a specifically ordered group of songs by the artist, which you never need to listen to it that way. Spotify doesn't make you do this either, they just changed the default playing order to be the original. Hell, many times artists write songs to connect between songs on the album, and Adele isn't the only modern artist that does it. Twenty One Pilots is another just off the top of my head.

Anyways, there are tons of other streaming options out there or you can just buy the music and listen to it however you want. I'm not sure what the big stink is about. Spotify works with the artists who make the music on its platform. Is that really unexpected, considering they are a music streaming platform?
 

cliffordcooley

Posts: 13,075   +6,376
If the user has to select shuffle every time they use a playlist. That is wrong. If the user can set the default within their account. I wouldn't have an issue. With that said, I don't have a Spotify account. So my voice is certainly worth less than Adele's.
 

captaincranky

Posts: 17,684   +6,465
I'm wondering how many albums are actually worth listening to in their entirety, much less being forced to listen to them in order. I can picture this with concept albums, but not for the crap album filler which is often included in the haste to get out an album in support of a hit single.

Another irony which often rears its ugly, is that the track which "the artist is most proud of", is the worst track on the album.

I'll generally dump at least one track per album, to get two albums.from the same artist onto one CD. (Or obviously a double album)..

I watched the Adele special. While she is a great singer, she did spend the entire time singing about herself. Me being a prog rock fan, there was nothing of social substance or conscience in her performance to grab my attention.

I will say she has a wonderful low register. I think she got as far down as E3, but as I don't have perfect pitch, that's just a guess.
 

NumberSix

Posts: 81   +143
I still buy my music, it is just a shame Google shut down Play Music because I now buy a lot less music and have turned to the used CD market on amazon and that must impact the artists much more than a shuffle button on a streaming service.