What about a work - release relationship?

Hi here
With classical music, it is very common to have works made of several movements (“hi-level work” like a Symphony). The consequence is that it is a real pain to see the relationship between a multi-movement work and a release that includes it. You must go through the movements (work), then the recordings, then the release.
If there was a possible direct relationship between the work and the recording, it would be possible to see all the releases including a work, and all the hi-level work recorded on a release… the text would be something like “includes a [partial] recording of” / “is [partially] recorded on”.
It’s just an idea. I know that it would be redundant with the path through “sub-works” and their recordings. It is currently possible to reconstitute the release - work relationship through this path.
However, there would be an added value in some complex cases and it could be a numbered relationship to sorts thing a little bit.
Any further thoughts ?

Erm, partial recording of a work already does exist, doesn’t it?

I don’t like doing it that way. It duplicates data, and to be useful it would also require adding the relationship to every version of a release, which kinda goes against the whole point. There’s been some talk about recording and track grouping, which might be an option, and another option would be to actually have add some sort of way to check whether a release has a full work or not by checking if all parts are linked to its recordings.

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For me it also seems be would be duplicating current data. We already have all necessary data available and this is more about how to show it to users.

I perfectly understand the frustration behind your proposal. Most of the random visitors won’t even notice that we have this kind of data (almost like hidden) available on movements. For example for people searching for discography of “Symphony no. X by composer Y” our work page could be more useful if we would also list releases on it.

OK, thank you for the arguments.
I’ll forget it. It was a bad idea.

On the contrary. You’ve highlighted a part of the interface which doesn’t work well for end users and suggested a means of correcting it. This sort of input is valuable. It just happens that, in this case, there may be a better way to achieve the same goal. Please do feel free to discuss ways in which you feel the data could be better presented or used in future.


Ok, let’s go then.
My proposal was addressing two needs :

  • The primary one is two see, on a Work page, all the releases that includes a performance of this work, with the following fields (in order of diminishing importance) : Release Name, Release Artist, date, Label, cat no, barcode… (similarly to an artist’s release page like musicbrainz.org/artist/[PUID]/releases, there could be a work releases page musicbrainz.org/work/[PUID]/releases with the same layout)

  • The secondary one is to see on a Release (or Release group) page, the works performed in the release (the order doesn’t necessarily matter, neither if the work entirely or partially performed).

Once this is stated, my first thoughts and comments :

  • The 2nd one is secondary to because if, formally, it is not possible today, the existing information is an acceptable alternative. I mean: if you don’t see the works name on a release page, you always see the tracks names and, in almost all the cases, they clearly mention the work performed. Furthermore, when CSG recording-work “performance of” relationships are implemented, then you actually see the work(s).
  • The first one is a real issue because, on a multi-movement work page, you just see the sub-parts works and you are rather far from the releases.
    Due to the versatility of the work-work “is part of” relationship, there might be a whole tree of works that are part of one other. You don’t know in advance where to stop navigating in this potential large tree of works and subworks to, then, seek for the related recordings (potentially many), then for releases related to these recordings (much more) !.
    Naturally, we could limit this navigation in the tree to the starting work and its first level (or, alternatively, two first levels) of sub-works.
    Then what about works that are related to the starting one but with some relationships that are not “part of”, e.g. covers, later version, etc.
    All these situations are the ones which led me to think that an alternative could be to let editors decide which works they want to relate to a release (or maybe to a release group)… Hence my first proposal.

Meaning a group of tracks could potentially have a super-title and an associated super-work?

Also known as tracksets (MBS-6680). :wink: