PureTracks.com Review

Figured I’d see what PureTracks was all about during lunch today. For those who haven’t heard of it, it’s basically a Canadian (only) online music store. This means nothing to those in the states, who have things like iTunes to purchase their legal online music from, but as a Canuck who wants to buy legal online music, this is important. Read on for my review.

Based on initial impressions, PureTracks gets 0/10. Why? Well, when I went to the site I got the following message:

Thank you for visiting Puretracks.com

Our website is available to Canadian residents only and requires
Windows Internet Explorer version 5.0 or higher.


Hmm….. I am a Canadian resident, coming from a Canadian IP address, so that can’t be it. I’m using a Mozilla based browser which is as good or higher than IE 5.0, so that can’t be it. Must be something wrong with their site then.

Nope, I fired up IE under wine and got the site. Hmm…. that’s interesting. I then went to a sub-page and got the URL and copied it into my Mozilla based browser. It worked, and go figure, looked the same as it did under IE. What a shock!

So they get 0/10 for flatly denying access based purely on the users browser. If I can’t see the site I can’t see what they have to offer, and I can’t tell my friends anything good about it, or even find things I want to buy when I get home and have a Windows system in front of me.

Now since I could get in I can give a second rating, based purely on a very non-scientific way I have of testing any online music stores. I simply do a couple of searches for common but not “top 40” artists and see if there are any hits. In this case PureTracks gets 5/10 based on my search for Johnny Cash (hits) and U2 (no hits).

However, their score is affected by not having Great Big Sea (no hits) or Spirit of the West (no hits). For a Canadian music site that’s pretty lacking for Canadian content. They do have Matthew Good Band (who I’m told are Canadian but I haven’t heard them before) and Barenaked Ladies.

So their selection isn’t complete, but has 3 out of 6 of the Canadian weighted searches I did. Not great, but not terrible, as they are a new site. So once I got in they stay at 5/10.

I’m still pretty pissed off about the lack of being allowed to see the site, so I threw off an email to their feedback email.

16 Comments on “PureTracks.com Review”

  1. Yep, same thing in Opera 7.21 in Windows. Main page denies access, the BrowseSummary page works just fine. So do searches.

  2. I’ll never understand this. While I might not /agree/ with the decision, “it won’t work cause of tons of ActiveX and IE-only rendering hacks” is at least an answer based on, well, something.
    Eh. I’ve sat in on meetings where people wanted to exclude everything but IE on the premise it was easier to reply with “use what everyone else does, weirdo” than to try and make the site work under every browser. Complaints about a “slippery slope” (next thing you know, /blind people/ using a screenreader will want to access our content!), all that jazz.

  3. If it’s what “everyone uses” then there’s no need to have a page telling non-IE People to fuck off then? sigh I hate stupid people.

  4. Mozilla Firebird 0.7 on XP “Work For Me”. As does Opera 7.11. I have no problem getting to the main page using either. Of course, someone may have since fixed the problem.

  5. I have since used both Moz and Opera to do some browsing of the site and formatting of the pages which display all the tracks for an album really sucks under both browsers. It is readable but jumbled

  6. My initial reaction to Pure Tracks: Meh. Precious few hits for material I really wanted, defects in tracks I’ve paid to download, and a degree in engineering required before you can burn in any program, including Windows Media Player.
    As I said to the company in my feedback, let me know when you’re done beta testing.

  7. Completely unacceptable for one simple reason: they offer no capability to move your tracks from one machine to another. So unless you’re never, ever planning to upgrade, you’re going to get screwed at some point.
    A very important point that many reviews tend to miss.

  8. What a joke PURE TRACKS is,after reading some of the reviews in your site i tried looking up some simple CANADA ARTISTS. First choice was RUSH,and ended up with there pick D J KRUSH,Econoline Crush,Edens Crush,Gold Rush,Jimmy Rushing,Otis Rush,Rush Jennifer,Tim Rushlow and finally Tom Rush. Second choice was April Wine and got lucky with THE HITS album. Third choice was GODDO and ended up with the big goose egg choice,the big zero. So i tried good old Gordon Lightfoot and ended up with there pick of DMITRI HVOROSTOVSKY ,now theres a fine CANADIAN ARTIST. Out of four picks of canadian artists you get one listing. Bring back NAPSTER ,WIN X ,KAAZA because pruetracks is another great canadian screw up. BIG DOUG.

  9. Hey guys I see all of your woes with Puretracks and I was wondering if your able to take the tracks you download and use them in say winamp or some other DJ Type program? Oh and ya I agree with many of you on the IE thing if it was not for the fact that every website I use needs It I would much rather Netscape or hell screw windows all together and get linux thats where i am headed for soon, I think, windows is starting to piss me off anyway thanks if anyone can help me with my question at all

  10. I get the same message denying me access to the Pure Tracks site, and I’m using IE6. Any suggestions? Very very annoying, and I would think terrible for business.


  12. Puretracks is the worst online shopping experience I’ve ever had. 3 of the songs I purchased won’t play at all and after 6 days and several attempts to contact their customer service I still have received NO response.

  13. I tried Puretracks for the first and last time. I can’t listen to the songs on another computer, I have a wireless network at home, and my daughter can’t download the songs to her MP3 player. I’m afraid to try a CD burn cos after three tries you’re out. I’ll spring for the cost of a CD or better still, use Kazaa, next time.

  14. Wish I had read these reviews first! I tried the site last weekend, and my first download worked fine, so I went back to get some more music! This download failed completely, and when I tried to click to download again, their site just kept “looping” back to the same download page again. 5 days later and many, many emails (progressively nastier and fed-up on my part) and they finally reset something and I was able to download my second (and last ever) order. The comment by someone else is so true, this site is Pure Crap! Avoid this site at all cost..their customer service is awful, their attitude is even worse. I would NEVER ever go back to their site for any reason. Their one and only priority is to get your money out of your credit card as fast as possible…whether or not you ever get your order delivered is of no concern whatsoever. This was the worst internet shopping experience I have ever had.

  15. Puretracks is complete garbage. They had less than 1/10th of the bands i searched for, and a few of their songs have licence errors. Have an iPod? Thats too bad, becasue this site refuses to work on iTunes. I tried contacting them about my licence errors that prevent me from listening to my music on WMP, or burning them to a CD, they said they would get back to me within 24 hours, a bit of a wait, but i suppose they get ALOT of complaints so they haev to filter through everything. It’s been over 24 hours now, still no reply.
    Did i mention that it took me 5 tries to download 1 album that is full of errors? 0/10 NEVER UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE USE http://WWW.PURETRACKS.COM

  16. same B.S. from me too. When I go for a download sometimes I get; “Sorry, that’s not the way to invoke me” Like the thing is alive! Then I do the same thing an hour later and I get the “Download loop” Then 1 goes through after trying the manual download option and all it will do is 1 MB and stops. I’m sure its all my fault because I get the downloads free from a meat stick promo.