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Ridiculously hilarious Shazam fails

Here's what you get when identifying beats goes totally out of whack.

I have little recollection of life before the invention of Shazam. Those sore memories that still stand leave me dripping with perspiration: visions of ravers squabbling on Amnesia's dancefloor, Sven Väth and Ricardo Villalobos fighting off desperate techno-heads as they leech for their record collection. They were hard times, but lord how far we have come.

These days we throw our limbs around the clubs of Ibiza feeling protected. We are aware that when the DJ places the needle on a belter of a record, we have the opportunity to reach into our pockets and collect the tune, a little like that Pokemon game everyone raved about back in the day.

As truly life-saving as Shazam is, it can also be incredibly comical. Spinning around to see your mate hunched over in stitches, waving their blue-lit phone about like a total head case confirms one thing: Maceo Plex has just played the Swedish national anthem. (He did not.)

We have put together some of our favourite Shazam flops. Whether it's an intern with no musical knowledge frantically trying to ID a track in the Shazam HQ or a simple smartphone malfunction, it's happened to the best of us. We still love you, though.


Played by Antigone at Afterlife, Privilege

Honestly, this is hilarious. I've no idea who this chick is, but it reminds me of the days I used to boost about the streets of Stoke-On-Trent, wearing my McKenzie jacket and playing happy hardcore from my Motorola. This one is from Antigone, the epitome of techno, in the Chamber at Afterlife, the home of dark, clangy sounds. Flopped 9/10.


Played by Marvin & Guy at Circoloco, DC10

Though we may all look like warriors as we stomp along to the sweet, sweet tunes that fill DC10's Garden, the Italian twosome 100% did not play the theme tune to the 1979 film 'The Warriors'. Unlike our last fail, we can cut Shazam a little slack here. Marvin & Guy climb the disco ladder at an impressive rate. This theme tune is back when theme tunes were groovy, much like the late 70's. 7/10.


Played by Maceo Plex at Mosaic, Pacha.

The year is 2035. Pacha's bar is now a giant touchscreen that Apple invented years ago but decided to release now. There's not much communication, but Maceo Plex is now electro pop. Techno got old, and gold is the new black. DJs have had enough of guest list talk and thought, "Fuck it, up the BPM. Just go right up to 300. Add some violins." In the distance, the faint cries of EDM producers shout "We told you so!" 9/10.


Played by Nina Kraviz at Afterlife, Privilege.

The DJ industry is made up of gangs, not the intimidating type (except Marco Carola when his booth troops pile in by the hundreds). Some stick to their sound; others are risk takers. Kraviz is a known risk taker. Although throwing in a trance track in a techno set is not that risky anymore, we doubt this corker was thrown into the mix. Eyes may not lie, but Shazam certainly gives it a go at times. 7/10.


Played by Shadow Child at Creamfields, Privilege.

We saved the best until last. Without the image of the band that had their song showcased at the biggest club in the world, the comical effect lessens. So I've included one. You're welcome. Shadow Child is undoubtedly one of the most booked house DJs. It was no shock when he appeared on the Creamfields lineup. These three diamonds brightened our evening when they slid into our Shazam, priceless. 10/10.



I'd like to dedicate this feature to Nocni Leptiri. And Shazam.