Which date should be used for albums that get reissued digitally but with no tracklist changes?

I’m not sure if many of you have noticed, but streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer tend to re-issue releases all the time, I’m not sure why they do that, nothing really changes, the tracklist is the same, as is the ISRC for the songs, but the release gets a new ID on the database of that service and also gets a new barcode.

For example, all of TWICE’s Korean albums have been re-issued on Spotify 2 times now. There’s the original release. Then early 2020, they re-issued all their albums and they gained a new barcode and ID, I added them all on MusicBrainz (example from the same RG). For this one, I used the date they were added on Spotify instead of the original release date, but now they have re-issued the albums again, which happened sometime last year and I cannot figure when exactly that happened. Is it okay to enter those with the original release date? Or is there any way to fetch the date a Spotify release got added instead of the release date they put “manually”?


there’s a tool for that, right here: https://atisket.pulsewidth.org.uk/

it’ll pull release dates and everything. however, often the release date on streaming services is the original album’s release date, and in these cases the date should be removed. I usually remove anything before like, 2003-2004, since that’s when iTunes was first launched.


If you don’t know don’t use the original date - leave it blank. It hurts, I know :sob:


This usually happens because the artist/label signed a new exclusive distribution deal with a different distributor.

Anything put up on iTunes, you can estimate the year fairly accurately, so there’s no need to blank out the entire release date. iTunes IDs are assigned generally sequentially (however, pre-orderable albums have earlier IDs than albums that can’t be pre-ordered). Record companies often also announce these kinds of exclusive deals in press releases.