Everyone knows about NPR's quality podcasts, or at least they should. All Things Considered, Car Talk and Whose Line is it Anyway routinely top the charts on iTunes. But I'm also a fan of NPR's music. They do a great series of podcasts called All Songs Considered, and they often release great live performances, available as free downloads in iTunes.
Now, NPR Music has released its own iPad app, and as you can see above, it's very snazzy. Most of the content in the app is simply what's available on the NPR Music website, but it's all been redesigned for a touch interface. And while you can play new music straight through the website, playing it in a browser isn't always as easy as through an iOS device. The iPad version also has a very excellent playlist and a live radio, so there are tons of great ways to listen to awesome new music, all completely free.
There's a lot of other stuff in here too -- articles, reviews and other videos. But honestly, the music is enough: the app offers a great, curated experience of hours and hours of great free content and tunes.
NPR's Music app is one of the best gifts I've gotten all year (paid for, of course, by our tax dollars). If you're a fan of new music, especially indie or alternative, definitely give it a download.