MusicBrainz and DuckDuckGo !bangs

I just wanted to give a heads up that DuckDuckGo now has “!bangs” for all MusicBrainz entities and everything else the search in the upper-right corner of the site covers:

!mb<entity> searches through "entity"s using the same terms the search box, so e.g., !mbdoc will search documentation, !mbannotation will search annotations, !mbeditor will search editors, etc. Look at the link before for the full list.

Happy searching! :slight_smile:


it’s very handy. As ddg is my default search engine on several machines, these gave me consistent MB searches everywhere, even outside my Opera. And there are short forms (!mb, !mbr, !mbrg, etc.).

Excellent! Thanks a lot for this. I’ve been using the (old) bangs a LOT & will definitely use these ones as well.

Quite some time before you posted this, I was thinking of you @freso because the !mb artist search (I don’t know if you can add artist in that description page you linked), that has been ending on the http site.
Knowing how much you love https, I was wondering if one day, you would make something to change that, and how. :wink:

I’ve noticed something, @Freso.

For release groups and artists I most often use name search indeed, but for other entities, I will often use advanced search like:

DDG hashbangs like barcode:0077779440009 !mbr will not work as they are not “advanced” searches.

Would it be nice to turn advanced search on on those bangs or advanced search would have some drawbacks and better leave that to browser heavy customers like me?

Note that I don’t have any more access to edit the DDG !bangs than you do. Second, I think it’s fine that the default actions are the same as the default actions with the website search. Powerusers can set up custom search engines directly in their browser (well, at least on Firefox and Chrome/Chromium) for the advanced searches.


I was thinking about this again and I would like to add some advanced MB serach bangs as !ambr for advanced MB release search as it’s the one I always use advanced search for.

I mean, I always type in my browser !mbr catno:WPCL-11496 (or d catno:WPCL-11496 !mbr, as putting catno: at the beginning makes browser think it’s a protocl like http:) then I have to double‐click that “Indexed search with advanced query syntax” radio button, which is an extra mouse step for me.

Do you guys think !ambr is good? In the same fashion someone could consistently add other advanced bangs by prefixing with that a as I would like to start with only the releases for now.

Or is there any better bang name idea, out here? :slight_smile:

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Would there be a benefit to keeping all the musicbrainz related searches starting with !mb? That would give us either !mbar or !mbra, depending on ordering


I think it’s good with trailing “a”, but it could maybe mix up badly with preceding characters…
What do you think of adding a plus sign “+” at the end, like !mb+ for advanced artist search and !mbw+ for works and !mbseries+ for serires?
I see there are already !bangs with plus sign like !g+, so it is technically possible.

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I have requested the creation of !mbar: advanced query release search.
To allow catalogue number or barcode searches, for instance.

Here is the summary of our current !bangs:

!mb<a><entity> <query>

<a> is optional:

<entity> can be:

  • Full entity type: release, releasegroup, label, etc.
  • Abbreviated entity type: r, rg, l, etc.
  • None: Defaults to an artist search

<query> is your search term(s) or advanced syntax query.


  • !mb bowie: Searches for Bowie artists
  • !mbar catno:kicx*: Searches for releases which catalogue number starts with KICX
  • !mbw love you: Searches for love you works

Full list

Updated 2020-08-06 from

Entity Indexed (or other) Advanced
Artist !mb, !mbartist, !musicbrainz
Release Group !mbrg, !mbreleasegroup
Release !mbr, !mbrelease !mbar (pending)
Recording !mbrec, !mbrecording, !mbrc
Work !mbw, !mbwork
Label !mbl, !mblabel
Area !mbarea
Place !mbp, !mbplace
Annotation !mbannotation
CD Stub !mbcdstub
Editor (User) !mbeditor
Tag !mbtag (direct) n/a
Instrument !mbinstrument
Series !mbseries
Event !mbe, !mbevent
Documentation !mbdoc (Google) n/a
Wiki !mbwiki (MediaWiki) n/a

Disapointing that they did not add new advanced search !mbar, although they allowed duplicates like !mbrc.

MusicBrainz also has the ability to be added as a search engine to your browser (for example in Firefox by right clicking on the address bar), so you can search directly on MusicBrainz without going through an intermediary.

It only exposes the basic artist, release, label, and recording searches right now, but I think it could support the advanced syntax and other entities as well.


Yes yes, I know that. :grin:

You can do all MB searches in Firefox, even more complex searches involving JavaScript* in Firefox, Vivaldi, Opera.
So the possibilities are without limits.

But as I use several browsers and computers, this duckduckgo !bang thing was very welcome to save setting up all this all the time everywhere, especially on smartphone, where it is less possible.

* Although catalogue number search doesn’t require this any more.

I am requesting it again now at DuckDuckGo New !Bang

  • Site name: MusicBrainz Releases (advanced search)
  • Bang command: mbar
  • Example search: catno:kicx*
  • Bang URL:{{{s}}}&type=release&method=advanced
  • Bang category: Entertainment, Audio
  • Comments:

    It would allow us to find releases by criteria like catalogue numbers, barcodes, AND OR keywords, etc.


I also want to note that I submitted a request for a new bang for the MusicBrainz forum as I feel that it would be beneficial.

  • Site name: MusicBrainz Forum
  • Bang command: mbf
  • Bang URL:{{{s}}}%20category%3A6
  • Bang category: Entertainment, Forum

Unfortunately it seems that duckduckgo will not take any more bang updates.

One year ago I requested the removal of bogus &handlearguments=1 from existing bangs.
And I requested !mbar.
Then more recently you requested !mbf.

Nothing happened.


It’s a global duckduckgo bang issue, no bangs are being updated.

Here on MB, still no advanced release search and main search still bumps to and from HTTP with a bogus textsearch.html and &handlearguments=1 parameter.

And on the French main cinema search, is still broken after months of multiple update requests by me.