MiniLyrix For Mac OS X ReviewWritten by John Thompson on December 6, 2011 · Filed under Software
With so many sources of music available on the internet, it’s no surprise that iTunes libraries continue to grow and grow (and grow and grow), but despite all of this music in our libraries, there aren’t many programs out there that can provide you with lyrics to the song that you’re currently listening to.
MiniLyrix is a very small (0.5mb) application which is available from the Mac App Store, and it pulls all of the lyrics information from the id3 tags of the track which is currently playing. This means that if you have an unorganised mess of a music library, this isn’t an application that you’ll want to use. For the perfectionists among us who have perfectly tagged libraries, read on.
I’m slightly obsessive about the tags that go with the music in my iTunes library. In fact, I’m quite obsessive about my music library as a whole. All of my tracks have been ripped to a lossless format to maintain audio quality, and I find the highest resolution artwork possible from across the web for my albums. This obsessive nature carries over to my tracks’ id3 tags, which are all filled in to the best of my knowledge.
As a result, I have a library of music which is fully tagged and contains all of the correct lyrics, although if you don’t have the same level of organisation then you can find good third party software to do this for you.
Anyway, getting back to the matter at hand, MiniLyrix takes this information and displays it in a small window containing a simple interface with the song information, basic iTunes controls, and the lyrics.
The original version of the app had a number of issues, but version 2 has brought some welcome improvements along with it. Gone is the bugginess and Lion incompatibilities, and instead we have a solid, cheap, useful application.
The window will sit in the space in which you opened it and remains unobtrusive as, unlike conventional windows, it’s transparent. You can choose to have it floating on your desktop and position it however you like, or let the application live on your menu bar where it will be accessible whenever you wish to view the lyrics of a song that’s currently playing.
To save you from switching to iTunes every time you want to change or rate a song, you can use the controls within the window to quickly manage your music. The basic controls will allow you to skip and pause songs as well as rate the track that’s currently playing.
In the new version of MiniLyrix, you can also hit Cmd + S to search for lyrics to a song that’s playing if you don’t already have them. Unfortunately this is done through your browser, which isn’t the cleanest method in the world. It would be great to have the feature automated and included in the application itself in a future update.
At £1.99, MiniLyrix is definitely at “impulse buy” level for many Mac owners, and if you find yourself singing along to songs a lot then you’ll want to check it out. You can buy it from the Mac App Store.