Release country of CD/Vinyl releases / Release identification methods

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I hate to leave it blank but I’m not sure if I add the correct release country when adding CD/Vinyl releases. What is the correct release country?
Style Guidelines:
" Country: The country the release was issued in." But what does that mean? Is it where the medium is produced/printed/distributed?
Even local bands offer their releases to the whole world. There’s an Austrian band using an American based web shop to distribute their album which offers worldwide shipping, even if it’s not very likely that there are many sales outside Austria. But probably this is a [worldwide] release, isn’t it?

If available I use information from Discogs, AllMusic, etc. but even there it seems to be a bit random.

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Usually not the same edition. There are regional CD plants.

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You think they are printed more than once? I would have thought they would be shipped to wherever you would have ordered them from the place where they are kept on stock. Isn’t that more likely? (local bands, only few international sales)

Example:
LEYYA - Sauna
In which country was this release issued in?
(it was previously possible to buy directly from Las Vegas Records (Viennese Label), but now their records are distributed via bandcamp)

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Oh I don’t know for mail order releases.
It’s easier to manage with my retail store releases that go through the usual channels.

Maybe leave it blank?
Fill in at least the details such as manufactured by which label (check CD matrix) in which area, to see more clearly.

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Las Vegas Records had their own web shop, no mail orders. Now they switched provider, so https://shop.lasvegasrecords.at/ is actually a bandcamp site. It’s possible that this is another release now than mine from 2 years ago, but how could I know where it was issued in?

That’s what I hate to do! But I should probably do so, if there is doubt.

I just read Digital releases: Merging? / Long country list? / Just [Worldwide]? (not the whole thread), and it seems there is also continuing discussion with digital media.

Hi @ernstlx!

Luckily with physical releases it isn’t as complicated as with digital releases - you don’t worry about where things can be distributed to or from (e.g., everywhere with a postbox). You generally just use the location of the label that is releasing it, and if no label/self release, the country that the artist is from.

For LasVegas records I would call their physical releases ‘Austria’ release events - meanwhile digital from bandcamp is [Worldwide].

:slight_smile:

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Yes, as @aerozol says, it is quite easy with physical.
If you see only USA companies (back cover, booklet, CD label) and it is made by USA manufacturer (CD matrix), then you can conclude it is a USA release.
Same for any other country.

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Then all releases of a specific Label should have the same release country. I’ve looked up Partisan Records LLC. Currently there are 4 releases (including the one I added - Everywhere We Looked Was Burning) - 1x US, 1x Europe, 2x Worldwide. I added worldwide, but they all should probably be US. That’s what is printed on the cover, although she’s a Tunesian artist, living in France and my CD was shipped from the UK. But that’s fine.

Probably it’s not always that clear, but I’ve checked some of my CDs and all of them would have a specific countries to select.

But what’s with “European releases”?
Example: Brother to Brother - The first release (1983 or 1984, not in MB) was manufactured and distributed in Austria only. Further releases where manufactured in Germany and distributed in Europe. Currently the release country is Europe. It should probably better be Germany.

Thanks to you all.

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It is very common for a European release to be released Europe wide but all manufactured in a single country. Think about what the artist is aiming at here. The Artist will “release my latest album in Europe in March”. The country of manufacture is less important.

It is very common for all CDs to be made in The Netherlands, or UK, or Germany. And then found in the shops in many European countries on the same day.

I have various old Punk albums that were “UK Only” releases but actually manufactured in France. This makes it hard to know from just looking at the disc packaging. Research is often required elsewhere to confirm where the CD was on sale.

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But that’s the problem with new releases. They often do not appear in record stores at all, not even locally. They can be ordered worldwide from a web shop. And most of the artists do not say “it will be released in Europe on …”, but they say only “it will be released on…”

Concerning Peter Gabriel Encore Series: there’s no information on the packaging or medium, but Real World Records is based in England. So the release country is UK, isn’t it? Currently they are [worldwide] (mostly I think).

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Even for modern releases you still get e.g. releases especially for and only released in Japan. That being said, I’m not against more liberal use of XW (even if just to reflect the shrinking importance release countries have these days).

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Especially for Peter Gabriel/Real World I would like to stick to [worldwide] as Real World Records in general tries to help artists to offer their works worldwide.

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The modern world is much more connected than in the past. It was easier with 1980s and earlier as manufacture was usually close to the market. And you walked into a shop to pick up the media from the shelf.

With modern website releases it is trickier. Especially as more bands “self release” now.

I just try and put on my “common sense head”. What is the artist aiming for? Peter Gabriel does seem to be aiming to post those CDs worldwide. It is easy to argue for either UK or Worldwide in those cases.

Though you could also argue that each CD is released at the gig - so is the country of the gig the release country?

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Love this one!

Administration would be easy and flags would highlight the location of the event, but that’s usually not what they are about. Of course, most of the customers will live in the respective country.
Still I prefer worldwide.

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He releases from the UK to the World.

So which is the direction of the “release”? His Market is “The World”, but his Market Barrow he sells from is parked in “The UK”.

The “gig location as country” is due to the FIRST copies being available on the day at the gig itself. Hence this being the “original release country”.

I’d stick with UK for these.

Have a guideline page https://musicbrainz.org/doc/Release/Date

From that I’d try and derive the meaning of “country”, but my ability to search the documentation is lacking. I can’t find anything up to date about exact country definition.

Based on this, I’d say that, indeed, the release country should be the concert country. This is where the release is first available. (Only for these applicable releases, obviously doesn’t apply for studio releases.)

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No, you can purchase them on the day at the gig itself, but you have to wait several weeks until you can enjoy your special encore. The physical CDs come with the download code. They sell non-existent products which are to produce and to be shipped to wherever from the UK (at least my copies). But they aim to release it in all those countries where orders have come from.

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More or less, yes. Often people have just set the wrong release country because that’s where they bought it.

At the end of the day nearly every label can ship their stuff worldwide, and is trying to get their artist worldwide exposure (goes without saying). But setting everything to worldwide makes the field kind of pointless, no?

When you have a release reissued ten times on different labels it’s simply most useful to differentiate by country and area. JP vs USA tells you a lot - even though I guarantee the U.S. release at least is available all over the world, you should enter it as U.S.

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No really, if we are speaking of CD releases, it only happens in France for some really rare cases where a few stores will import some CD that are not otherwise distributed in France. And usually, you will notice with the higher price and unusual US layout (including sticky upper-spine sticker) that it is an import.

Japanese imports are slightly more often for their bonus tracks compared to or edition, but all in all, imports are unusual.

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Most labels I will be able to go to their webstore and order it to be shipped to mine, no? Also if something is only released on a US label it will still make its way to NZ record shops - I can’t really think of a popular release that I haven’t been able to get at all. NZ doesn’t usually get its own distro deal (except for the big ones of course, with NZ/AUS distribution arms).

Regardless, we should enter the country as the label country (usually) for physical release, right? That’s the most useful.

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