A Bushwick Resident Wants to Improve How You Listen to Podcasts

Brielle Schiavone 


From “S-Town” to “2 Dope Queens,” podcasts are clearly all the rage these days, but it can be overwhelming with so much content out there, which we know will only keep expanding. Luckily, Bushwick resident and Caffe Vita employee Ian Bonhotal has created a solution for this lack of structure, while also providing a fresh space for listeners to discover new shows—his recently launched venture PodSpective.

Podspective is a gorgeous, minimal site that thoroughly reviews, rates and recommends popular podcasts. Similar to Rotten Tomatoes for movies and Pitchfork for music, the site exists to allow “you to focus on only the best of the best.”

“I love podcasts, I listen to them all day,” Bonhotal expressed to Bushwick Daily. “I see them emerging into their time right now, entering mainstream culture. As they do that, there’s going to be some growing pains and some of that is figuring out what is worth your time. PodSpective will help people separate the weeds from the plants.”

Since launching PodSpective few months ago, Bonhotal has reviewed roughly 25 podcasts and the number will keep growing. With a similar aesthetic to Pitchfork, the site’s layout is clean and easy to navigate— podcast cover art dominating the space, with a simple rating below each show. PodSpective carefully breaks podcasts down by reviewing many aspects—including consistency, host, production and sharing notable episodes—in addition to suggesting other podcasts the specific listener may enjoy.

“I had the idea for the site when I was in the shower. I was on Pitchfork’s website beforehand, looking for new albums in their Best New Music. It’s definitely not where someone should get all of their music, but it’s a good curation,” Bonhotal said. 

When Bonhotal first started working for Caffe Vita delivering coffee, he found himself unable to listen to music for hours straight, and needed mental stimulation, which is how podcasts shine. He now averages around eight hours of podcast listening on a given day, roughly 20-30 episodes. “It’s kind of a vicious cycle. There’s so much good stuff out there right now, it’s crazy,” Bonhotal said.

“There is an option on the default iPhone IOS app where you can listen to podcasts at double the speed, so I’ve been doing that. It’s made my life a lot more simple, as I subscribe to more and more,” Bonhotal explained.

Living in New York City, we’re not strangers to being on-the-go, and Bonhotal explained how podcasts can be a more friendly outlet than other mediums when multi-tasking.

“When New York City gets overwhelming sometimes, it’s nice to disappear in a podcast for a few hours and almost create a new world by popping your earbuds in. People have less and less time these days, it takes a certain amount of attention and focus to sit down, do nothing else and read a book. You can’t be messing around on your computer or cleaning your house, whereas podcasts afford you the opportunity to do those tasks and add value to the time you’re already spending.”

Take advantage of PodSpective’s well-curated picks and get your listening on! New to podcasts? Bonhotal recommends “S-Town” and “Serial” as great starting points. Follow on Twitter to keep up-to-date on reviews.

Photo by Lee Campbell on Unsplash.

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