Help needed find albums using "XML Web Service / Version 2 / Search"

Hello community,

I’m from germany and new to musicbrainz.

I try to automatical update my music library with complete MP3-TAGs and cover art.
Most of my MP3 files only have the artist and the track in its filename.
Thus I extract this and try to find the related album with musicbrainz XML web service.

I selected a file as my example. With this example my problem is, that I can’t find the related album. Instead there are a lot of compilations and a single-version of it.

My example is: “Cutting Crew - (I just) died in your arms”. I know, it’s the 6th track on the album “Broadcast” from 1986.

Sad but true I can’t find it. Here’s what i tried:
First approach:"(I Just) Died in Your Arms" AND artist:“Cutting Crew”

delivers the single version from 1988 only!

Second approach:"(I Just) Died in Your Arms" AND artist:“Cutting Crew”

delivers 105 recordings. The first 89 hits have a score of 100 and are all compilations.
(102/105 of them are compilations - one of them -> best of cuttong crew)
3 hist are albums from this artist. All with a score of 88 :frowning: .
best hit is no. 95 -> the single "(i just) died in your arms"
next hit is no. 98 -> the USA mix of “Broadcast” from 2010
last hit is no. 99 -> the 12’’ mix of “Broadcast” also from 2010

The original version from Broadcast from 1986 isn’t in this list. :sob:

Can anyone give me an advise on how I have to search to find this album?
Any help is greatly appreciated.

Best regards,



If you really want to use the web service, you can apply filters to your query. Example:

But are you sure that you want to use the web service directly? There are apps and APIs that might make your project easier.

Are you sure? With your query (and adding offsets*), I found this and this, Both appear on the album Broadcast.

* By default, only 25 of the 105 results are displayed. Add the offset={x} parameter to your query to get the remaining results. So e.g. this request gives you results 100 through 105:

Hi CallerNo6,

thanks you for your reply.
You’re right. It wasn’t may actual query. It looks like that:"(I Just) Died in Your Arms" AND artist:“Cutting Crew”&limit=100&offset=5

I can’t find the 1986 original album in the reply.
I’m very confused, that the Releases from cutting crew only have a score of 88, while the compilations (nearly all) reach 100.

I’ll give the Magic Mp3 TAgger a chance. :slight_smile:

I’ll have a look at the APIs aswell. (Don’t they use the Web service aswell? :confused:

Check again? :slight_smile: I see a 1986 UK release and a 1987 US release.

The score is some kind of lucene magic based on text matching and the distance between strings. Notice that some of the recordings have ETI appended to the title, e.g. “(USA mix)”).

Have you tried tagging with Picard yet? You might find that AcoustIDs help.

your right, it’s there! Shame on me. :blush:

But I’m still wondering if I can tweak the query such, that I find the first release.
I’m not interested in any compilation where this song appears. :innocent:
I would like to find the root

Thanks for your support and suggestions

I don’t think you can solve this problem alone with the query, so that the release you want is always on top. You need some client side processing. What tagging software like Picard does is applying some matching algorithm to the results to find the best match. I would suggest you try some of the tagging software first before you implement your own. Maybe existing software already fulfils your needs, and if not you will have a better understanding on what you want to implement yourself.

1 Like