Digital Release with two Bandcamp links: different release, or not?

Tags: #<Tag:0x00007fbb39fae528> #<Tag:0x00007fbb39fae2f8>

Recently I noticed that certain releases are available twice on Bandcamp. Examples:

https://paganrecords.bandcamp.com/album/g-d
https://nonopusdei.bandcamp.com/album/g-d

https://godzovwarproductions.bandcamp.com/album/i-i-dalej
https://gruzja.bandcamp.com/album/i-i-dalej

https://godzovwarproductions.bandcamp.com/album/jeszcze-nie-mamy-na-was-pomys-u
https://gruzja.bandcamp.com/album/jeszcze-nie-mamy-na-was-pomys-u

In each case one link from the pair is label.bandcamp.com, and another is bandname.bandcamp.com. The musical content is exactly the same. There can be some subtle differences in artwork, like in the first example.

The question is, should we treat these as different releases in MusicBrainz? Initially I thought these should be separate releases (one on a label, another self-released), but… I don’t know.

What do you think? I guess the question is if the money goes directly to the band or to the label, but how can we know that?

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If the artwork is (even subtly) different, it should be a new release. I’ve added “double” Bandcamp releases before, one from label and one from artist. (They may also have different barcodes.)

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OK, different artwork (even if the difference is slight) clearly makes a distinct release. But what if the attached digital artwork is exactly the same (like both Gruzja albums from my list of examples)?

Another matter: what if the release date in the two Bandcamp pages is the same, but actually it’s not the case? For example, both Bandcamp pages of “I iść dalej” state the release date was February 27th 2019. This is true for the label release, but I know for a fact that the band release appeared fairly recently (a month or two ago).

And how does the concept of a barcode apply to digital releases?

This is not too uncommon, and in general, I’d say this is the same as the album being in both iTunes and Amazon - no need for two releases. That said, if you find out there was an earlier self-release and then the label re-released it, rather than it just being put up on both places with permission of the label, then I’d create a separate release.

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With Bandcamp you can find the barcode (when existing) in the source code. Search for upc, here for your examples it’s null.

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Can you provide working examples for this? Perhaps we can add it to importer if reliable enough.

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Sure, I got this tip from @waxie, see edit #65496559 for example.

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Implemented by https://github.com/murdos/musicbrainz-userscripts/commit/f5869e7c95eacf708f914427f3a3063db853ede7

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Wow thanks, I feel stupid to don’t ask for it before :slight_smile:

It seems to me it doesn’t work well, I noticed the barcode extracted often matches one “random” release on the page, not a specific one.
So it is very likely UPC prefilled isn’t the one of the release the user is trying to add.

Not that the UPC itself is wrong (it exists, and matches one release), but since we don’t have mean to know which release it matches, I’d rather display it on the page instead of prefilling barcode field.

What do you think?

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I’ve already had my suspicion about this before UPC extraction was implemented. TralbumData.current.upc doesn’t necessarily refer to the digital release.

It looks like Bandcamp provides one UPC field only that is used for all sales.

I didn’t finish my observations yet but here is an example:
https://eleniviolaris.bandcamp.com/album/rainstriker
TralbumData.current.upc: "5065002105103"
On CD back cover: 5065002105103

Edit 2020-05-06:
Looks like Bandcamp now has a separate field for sales reporting of physical items. Compare:

Furthermore, the example I provided no longer shows the CD covers:

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I changed the Bandcamp Importer behavior regarding this issue.
It doesn’t add the found UPC in barcode field of the release editor anymore, but it is displayed at the bottom of the release page (near keywords) so the editor can copy it if needed.

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And when the url redirect to the same Bandcamp store? I just notice this today, but I realized that the label is different by location Orindal Records vs Dalliance Recordings.

Digital releases & labels can get very tricky on Bandcamp.

In many cases, the release can be the same (cover art & tracklist) on different Bandcamp URLs: artist, labels

Sometimes a label is meant to release a physical medium (vinyl, CD, or whatever), and still provide the digital release. Sometimes the vinyl is released by one label, the CD by another, and the digital release by the artist (or a mix of that). Technically labels (ie. a vinyl-only label) only apply to physical releases, but since they also provide the digital release…

Sometimes an artist self-releases an album (no label), and this gets re-released in the exact same form (including cover art) few months later on a label’s Bandcamp, after the artist was signed (and sometimes the release is then removed from the artist’s Bandcamp page, to only appear on label’s one).

Sometimes digital releases slightly differ (ie. 8 tracks on label’s Bandcamp, 8 + 1 on artist’s Bandcamp).

So, do your best…

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