A somewhat fringe case involving a 2LP release

I want to investigate for a moment the Godspeed You! Black Emperor album, G_d’s Pee AT STATE’S END!. In particular, the vinyl release (the CD and digital versions have no peculiarities).

Here’s the issue, of which I can’t think of any similar cases from which to figure out precedent. The album is comprised of four tracks—two long and two short—split over a 12" and a 10" LP. So far so good, as the database is correct in this basic fact. Where things get a bit confusing is that the listening order is not both sides of the 12" followed by both sides of the 10". Rather, a more accurate way to put it would be that the 12" contains sides A and C, and the 10" has sides B and D. This can be confirmed by the Discogs entry and of course the order of tracks on the CD and digital versions. The liner notes somewhat confusingly refer to the sides as A, B, 3, and 4, but the concept itself remains consistent.

And so my question arises: what makes sense for the MB entry? I don’t think any solution would, for example, order correctly in audio players because they prioritize disc number over track number, but I also don’t necessarily think that should be a priority in tagging vinyl releases. I would say it is currently unambiguously wrong, but I’d like some confirmation. Any feedback or better ideas?

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I would leave everything as-is, and rename the track titles to:
A, C
B, D

Or if you’re feeling mischevious:
A, 3
B, 4

I think either of those would be correct.

There is some precedence, as there used to be a lot of LPs made with this kind of listening order, when LP autochangers where a thing (was called ‘auto-coupling’ I think).
Finally found an example in MB


Well, at least the Track Titles alpha sort for correct playback order. :rofl:

It was common in the past. If you have two record decks, this makes continuous playback much easier to handle.

I’d use the A/C B/D naming to be nicer to people. Would also add a note in the annotation otherwise someone will try and “correct it”.

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The play order should be clear and it should be possible for a player to determine the order of the tracks by sorting, so prefix with A,C,B,D will allow the tracks B-1, C-1 to sort and play correctly in the intended order.

Thank you! I opted for the first option for the sake of clarity. I forgot about auto-coupling, which is very slightly different in practice (that is, ordering in that case was A/D and B/C) but similar enough to work as precedent.

Thanks so much!

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I didn’t know about auto-coupling. The other feature of record players was the stacker… Load two physical records onto the stack and hit play. The first one plays. When it finishes, the next one drops down and plays… In this case, the listener has to only get up and go to the record player once and turn them over to hear the rest of the album…

As far as I understand it ‘auto-coupling’ is the term for multi-LP releases that are pressed with the sides aligned so that they play the correct track order with ‘stacker’ systems :thinking:

Seems to be called Automatic Sequencing. Anyway we agree on labelling the order!