Noisetrade: download music and support artists at the same time

Martin Brinkmann
Aug 22, 2013
Music, Music and Video

The Internet is a great place to get a free music fix. I'm not talking about downloading ripped music albums or songs using P2P networks or the like, but legal options that people have. This includes listening to songs on YouTube, tuning in to Internet radio stations, or making use of free music platforms such as Jamendo.

Noisetrade has not been on my radar before, and from the looks of it, it is closest to Jamendo even though there are some differences to be found. Both have in common that you can listen to music online, download the music that is offered by artists on the site, and also tip artists to support them.

One of the core differences between both services is that there is no option to tune in to radio stations on Noisetrade.

When you visit the main website you instantly get a selection of new and notable artists that you may want to tune in right away. You may be surprised that you find independent artists here, but also well known ones such as Sheryl Crow or Matisyahu.

When you click on an artist you are taken to that artists page that highlights the available albums and songs. You need to click on an album here to open a page with options to listen to all songs offered by the artists or to download them right away.

Here you can also tip the artist, use sharing functionality to spread the word, watch embedded videos, access information about the songs or artist, and look at upcoming shows and tour dates.

Even better: here you find options to connect to the artist, which often include links to the artist's official website and social networking accounts, contact options to contact the artist , manager, booking or public relations, and to buy the music online from various sources.

The music buying may require explanation. While you can download some songs or even entire albums from artists from Noisetrade directly, and tip artists to reward them directly, it is usually the case that some works are not offered on the site. The "buy music" links let you buy albums or songs from the artist that are not necessarily available on the website.

So, if you like music of an artist you may use those links to buy more music by that artist on other platforms.

The site is not the easiest to navigate. While you can use the search on top to find artists or albums, it may not yield that many results as most artists featured on the site are independent ones that are not that well known.

Probably the best way to explore the site is to enter a genre instead in the search form as you will end up with artist and album suggestions related to that genre.

You can alternative click on the genres pulldown menu to filter by popular genres such as alternative, rock, pop or jazz directly.

Downloads are not direct. You have to enter an email address, country and zip code to get a download code emailed to that account.


Noisetrade is an excellent website to discover new artists. The quality of music is extremely good, judging from the artists that I sampled on the site.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Justin said on November 30, 2011 at 10:18 am

    The warning message about AAC streams when you load streams is because you don’t have the free Orban AAC/aacPlus Player Plugin installed.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 30, 2011 at 10:56 am

      Justin, thanks for the information.

  2. santosh said on December 1, 2011 at 12:43 am

    does this support AAC ? or only mp3 streaming

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on December 1, 2011 at 1:43 am

      I’d say it supports all pls streams but I have not tried that so cannot verify it 100%.

  3. Barnabas said on August 3, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    Thank you Martin for a most informative and viable solution (it allowed me to play streams from a Netherland internet radio station in my WMP)! Continued success to you!

    Barnabas (USA)

  4. AppleRome said on October 7, 2012 at 7:31 am

    Your steps’ recommendation is still valid until 7th October 2012.. Thank you very much !!

  5. Laura said on December 1, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Thank you!

  6. sak2005 said on December 9, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    You must convert file.pls to file.m3u
    because file.pls open with winamp and file.m3u open with wmp.

  7. Lithium said on February 10, 2017 at 11:10 am

    2017 still kicking on Windows 7
    Thx a ton

  8. Dennis said on April 18, 2017 at 4:05 am

    Hey, even i can do it, i stumbled through it and it works great! The only instruction advice i will add as i had to figure this out, when the wmp box opens that says save or open the bar on right says wmp click that drop down and select “open pls in wmp” once you do that it will work . Took me quite some time to discover that as i am no computer expert by any means. Having said that, previously i had downloaded codec packages and something about aac. None did any good. This rocks, i listen to a lot of internet radio and a number of them have dropped flash player and getting wmp to work had been a nightmare. So many thanks for this great solution to another problem that Micro-Hell will not even address. Peace- Out

  9. stephen marshall said on March 19, 2019 at 2:07 am

    openplsinwmp came in a zip file. I unpacked it, and didn’t find anything that looks like an executable, and even the files in the “doc” folder were in a format windows didn’t recognize. I’m not stupid. you said it would open effortlessly. It didn’t. This a rabbit hole I don’t want to go down.

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