Difference between revisions of "Release groups usage guideline"

From MusicBrainz Wiki
(Remasters should be grouped as well)
(Updated the links, and modifed the examples to better illustrate the guidelines.)
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Current Musicbrainz server release feature a concept called '''Release Groups'''. Just as the name suggests, it groups several releases together in one entity. Since this is not obviously clear, this page explains the difference and gives some guidelines on how to handle them.
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The latest (2009-05-24) Musicbrainz server release features a concept called [[Release group|release group]]s. Just as the name suggests, it groups several releases together in one entity. Since this is not obviously clear, this page explains the difference and gives some guidelines on how to handle them.
  
 
Both release groups and releases are "albums" in colloquial sense, but with a slight difference: a release is something you can buy as media, e.g. a CD box, a vinyl record etc. on its own, while a release group embraces the concept of an album -- it doesn't matter how many CDs or editions/versions it had. When an artist tells you "We've released our new album", he's talking about a release group. When his publisher says "This new album gets released next week in Japan and next month in Europe", he's talking about several releases belonging to the release group the artist has told you about.  
 
Both release groups and releases are "albums" in colloquial sense, but with a slight difference: a release is something you can buy as media, e.g. a CD box, a vinyl record etc. on its own, while a release group embraces the concept of an album -- it doesn't matter how many CDs or editions/versions it had. When an artist tells you "We've released our new album", he's talking about a release group. When his publisher says "This new album gets released next week in Japan and next month in Europe", he's talking about several releases belonging to the release group the artist has told you about.  
  
Therefore a single release group could contain:
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Therefore one release group could contain:
* Plain releases consisting of one or more discs, e.g. Nirvana's album "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/0da3291e-e864-40de-9bc2-b64abf2c3795.html Nevermind]" or Linkin Park's single "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/d0fd521d-06ef-4f98-8432-258413267b2a.html Bleed It Out]".
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* A "regular" release consisting of one or multiple discs, e.g. Transplant's single "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/ffecdcc5-08d6-3f2e-8d61-6329ce954bf1.html Diamonds and Guns]", a 3 disc self titled compilation by "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/7349c1f3-09fa-397f-848d-f976f315a746.html Nirvana]".
* Multiple-disc releases, including various artist compilations, like "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/e28bca11-ee27-4a6a-be5c-9848fc7f26a1.html Bravo Hits 64]" and Richard Wagner's 10-disc release "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/ad7b2786-404c-4d7b-a679-8de5e76c0507.html Ring der Nibelungen]".
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* Multi volume boxsets and various artist compilations, like Mozart's 9 volume, 170 disc "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/3ea5428d-1d2b-35ee-bbb4-5fb7171a7269.html Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Complete Works]" boxset, or the compilation "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/1e8136c4-a5ca-36b9-958e-6741dc9addeb.html Bravo Hits 64]".
* Different (special) editions with additional or alternative tracks or discs, e.g. Slipknot's "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/08f5be36-086c-411d-af2e-de2aabacc4e4.html Vol. 3: (The Subliminal Verses)]"
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* Different editions (special, limited, bonus etc.) with additional or alternative tracks or discs, e.g. Weezer's "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/9b8af98f-8214-32ee-9b05-96b8c557f7f0.html Weezer (Red Album)]" has ten editions in the database, and Franz Ferdinand's "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/1b4f4b3c-ca01-37b7-af1d-3e37989f86ad.html Tonight: Franz Ferdinand]" came on it's own, with a bonus disc, or on two vinyl records.
* Re-releases and re-masters, e.g. Blind Guardian's "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/f9de2cc5-e19e-4060-9aa7-0321c84698cc.html Nightfall in Middle-Earth]" released in 1998 and then in 2007.
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* Reissues (remasters, 10th year anniversary editions, etc.) e.g. Blind Guardian's "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/3a5d9bb8-8e19-379d-b294-ee8fcf743f77.html Nightfall in Middle-Earth]" released in 1998 and then in 2007, the musical "[http://test.musicbrainz.org/release-group/afdd011e-e2aa-39f3-b52b-1ffe001d8d87.html My Fair Lady (Original London Cast)]" released on vinyl in 1959 and CD in 1998.
  
 
A release group should not consist of:
 
A release group should not consist of:

Revision as of 09:33, 24 May 2009

The latest (2009-05-24) Musicbrainz server release features a concept called release groups. Just as the name suggests, it groups several releases together in one entity. Since this is not obviously clear, this page explains the difference and gives some guidelines on how to handle them.

Both release groups and releases are "albums" in colloquial sense, but with a slight difference: a release is something you can buy as media, e.g. a CD box, a vinyl record etc. on its own, while a release group embraces the concept of an album -- it doesn't matter how many CDs or editions/versions it had. When an artist tells you "We've released our new album", he's talking about a release group. When his publisher says "This new album gets released next week in Japan and next month in Europe", he's talking about several releases belonging to the release group the artist has told you about.

Therefore one release group could contain:

A release group should not consist of:

Musicbrainz automatically considers every release in the database to be part of a release group, even if this group only contains this one release. You don't have to worry about creating release groups, you only ever need to merge them.