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Next generation of music monitoring technology

Project funded by the Ministry of Science and Innovation of the Spanish Government (Reference: RTC2019-007248-7)
Duration: October 1st, 2020 to September 31st, 2023
Partners: BMAT (Coordinator), MTG-UPF
PI at the MTG: Xavier Serra

Despite the commercial success of the fingerprinting technologies in music monitoring systems, they still have key technological limitations that prevent the correct detection of music in many special contexts, such as in live music, when the music is in the background, or with low quality recordings, where even the fingerprinting technology itself is not applicable and it is necessary to use cover identification technology. These constraints mean that a significant % of the music that is played is not correctly reported, thus generating significant economic losses for authors and the music industry and are the basis of current technological competency in the digital rights management sector.

 The main objective of NextCore is the research and development of qualitative improvements of BMAT's audio fingerprinting and cover identification technologies on three main areas: a) the identification of recorded music when it suffers substantial alterations (e.g. reinterpreted by DJs) or when the signal is captured in unfavourable environments (e.g. via microphone, with ambient noise), b) the identification of musical works in unpublished performances (e.g. live events, recorded versions of songs) and c) the detection of the context in which the performance is broadcasted (e.g. radio or TV add blocks).

Within NextCore, the MTG will work on developing technologies to improve the current state of the art in automatic music monitoring. In particular the goal is to work on deep learning architectures specific for this problem, being able to improve the music detection by pre-processing the captured audio signals in situations like when the music is in the background or when the recording is of low quality, and to investigate new architectures for scalable music cover detection.

BMAT, founded in 2005 as a spin-off from the MTG, specialises in monitoring music globally across TVs, radios, venues and digital services. BMAT offers music monitoring and reporting services for more than 100 Collective Management Organizations (CMOs) and over 2000 record labels, publishers, digital services providers (DSPs) and broadcasters across 134 countries, becoming a neutral source of data available to any party involved in the music value cycle.