First there was Wordle, now there is Bandle. With a nod to the beloved word game in its title, the latter is a free app for music lovers that — while not yet as widespread as its predecessor — may be equally addictive. 

Following the same one-a-day, six-guess gameplay that Wordle employs, Bandle starts players off with the year a song was released, its number of views on YouTube, and a difficulty level. Users then guess the title by listening to the chorus instrument by instrument, starting with drums and working up to the vocal line. The goal is to get it right in as few layers as possible. Answers range from ’80s hits like Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” to Disney songs like Aladdin’s “A Whole New World.” 

The game launched on the web in 2022 and debuted as an app in December 2023, but according to NBC News, it’s seen a surge in popularity in the last couple of months. 

Prior to Bandle’s inception, “there was a Wordle craze with the world,” creator Johann Levy explained to the outlet in April. “And then Heardle, and I thought I could do something like that as well.” 

A hobbyist drummer, Levy works full time in research and development and devotes his spare time to the app. He uses the digital audio program Logic Pro to re-create songs layer by layer, a process that can take anywhere from 45 minutes to four hours. After introducing Bandle in browsers, he saw up to 1,000 enthusiastic players visiting the website at a time. 


“Everybody’s asking me, ‘It’s a great game. I want to play all day. And how do I do that?’” recalled Levy, who is based in France. He added:  “That’s how it became an app — just because people gave me the idea.”

Though users can’t necessarily play all day (only one song is available every 24 hours, just like Wordle), Bandle offers a lot to engage with. There’s a Reddit thread where Levy responds to feedback and an X (formerly known as Twitter) account where daily visual clues are posted. A blogger also offers breakdowns of each game on MSN. But the game’s boost in popularity is likely due to the devoted followers who post their attempts at solving each song on social media. 


Can I Guess The Song #bandle

♬ original sound – TheNeedleTok

“I haven’t done any [marketing] at all whatsoever,” Levy told NBC. “I don’t have the budget for that anyway. It spread with word of mouth.”

One of its most popular proponents is Anthony Fantano, a content creator and music reviewer with over 1.5 million followers on TikTok and 2.8 million on YouTube, where he goes by the account name “The Needle Drop.” 

“Sometimes I’m pretty bad at sort of, like, instantly recalling song titles and stuff like that on the fly,” Fantano told NBC. “But, you know, it’s still a fun challenge.”



I love this song #guessthesong #00s #00smusic #2000s #music #fyp #musicquiz

♬ original sound – noodle’s music Dailies

This writer can confirm that the game is indeed a challenge, with some days’ answers being wildly harder than others — and, of course, subjective to each player’s relationship with popular music. But as a sort of compensation prize for its difficulty, perhaps, Bandle offers “bonus rounds” each day, which invite users to delve deeper into each song by lining up lyrics, identifying photos of the musicians, and answering trivia questions.  

While Levy is elated about the success of the game, he’s especially enjoying the engagement of its community of players. “I have this alert on Google for the keyword ‘Bandle,’” he said, “and each time there’s a new video, from anyone really, I watch that.”