The Doors Review
Explore the history of Jim Morrison and the rest of the iconic Sixties band through their complete album discography, video interviews and more with this iPad app
When you are one of the most iconic rock bands ever, with a front man synonymous with headlines and controversy, you could argue that creating a content-filled app would be a fairly easy feat. Yet the amount on offer in The Doors is truly impressive, and will not only utterly delight fans, but also engage and interest those with less of a devotion to the band.
Such is the level of detail, displayed through some truly stunning digital memorabilia, even if you’ve never bought a Doors album before you will quickly find yourself mesmerised by the story of the band and lead singer Jim Morrison in particular. Putting the app down will not be an easy task. The cold hard numbers tell us that there are more than 700 images within the app, as well as over 100 sound clips, including previews of every track from every album the band released. These are all held within themed home screens for each record, and alongside the track lists there are documents, artworks, images, scrapbooks and videos. Essentially each has its own dedicated app – themed and around that release. It’s a hugely impressive archive of music and art, but incredibly this is only the beginning of this app and its contents – though you will be linked back here on plenty of occasions when exploring elsewhere.
The Story section is a very good way of bringing together a lot of the different segments of the app into a single scrollbar, with the life and times of The Doors shown in chronological order. Key tours are covered in dedicated eBooks alongside the latest album releases – linking you back to the aforementioned sections. There’s a Jim Morrison tribute section, full of writings about him from fellow band members and famous figures, such as from Rolling Stone journalist Hunter S. Thompson. The great thing about the Story bar is that it can be pulled up on any screen and swiped through, no matter how deep you find yourself elsewhere.
Functionality and design has also been given plenty of consideration, with so much content to navigate this is a big positive. The pop-up menu can be accessed on any screen and allows users to quickly skip between sections, so should you catch a reference to the band’s European tour in 1968 in the timeline section, in a couple of taps and swipes you can be reading through the eBook devoted to the events of that tour. Encyclopedic would be a good way to look at the amount of information and insight available to you. Perhaps the best example of this is the collection of full court papers from Morrison’s infamous Florida trial in 1970, including transcripts rulings and FBI exchanges regarding Morrison and the case.
Another key function of the app is the ability to favourite any page and add it to the Favourites section by tapping and holding on any given screen. This gives users the chance to create their own abridged version of the app as they explore. For real fans of the music, the media player that first appears in the album section is actually present throughout the app, so users can listen to track previews anytime.
These are only song clips, with links to iTunes should you wish to download the full track. On the subject of music fanatics, a hidden gem for audiophiles is Tech Nuggets’ section under each album, which details every piece of equipment used by the band in the studio recording that album. It’s detail on a quite incredible level, and it sits in an app alongside handwritten poetry by Morrison, old tape cases, and maps of LA showing key sites in Doors history.
What we have here is a digital museum that stands alone in terms of what there is to read, watch and listen to. It is a shame that given the amount of content across the screens, full tracks can’t be listened to, but you’ll soon forget under the weight of other media. If you’re a Doors fan, buying this app is a no-brainer, but even for those of us with just a passing admiration will be seriously tempted to invest in something that gives you as much as this app does.
Stunning in so many ways, an app for audiophiles to treasure.
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