The interaction of a strongly nonlinear spin system with a crystalline lattice through magnetoelastic coupling results in significant modifications of the acoustic properties of magnetic materials, especially in the vicinity of magnetic instabilities associated with the spin-reorientation transition (SRT). The magnetoelastic coupling transfers the critical properties of the magnetic subsystem to the elastic one, which leads to a strong decrease of the sound velocity in the vicinity of the SRT, and allows a large control over acoustic nonlinearities. The general principles of the non-linear magneto-acoustics (NMA) will be introduced and illustrated in ‘bulk’ applications such as acoustic wave phase conjugation, multi-phonon coupling, explosive instability of magneto-elastic vibrations, etc. The concept of the SRT coupled to magnetoelastic interaction has been transferred into nanostructured magnetoelastic multilayers with uni-axial anisotropy. The high sensitivity and the non-linear properties have been demonstrated in cantilever type actuators, and phenomena such as magneto-mechanical RF demodulation have been observed. The combination of the magnetic layers with piezoelectric materials also led to stress-mediated magnetoelectric (ME) composites with high ME coefficients, thanks to the SRT. The magnetoacoustic effects of the SRT have also been studied for surface acoustic waves propagating in the magnetoelastic layers and found to be promising for highly sensitive magnetic field sensors working at room temperature. On the other hand, mechanical stress is a very efficient way to control the magnetic subsystem. The principle of a very energy efficient stress-mediated magnetoelectric writing and reading in a magnetic memory is described.