Musicbranz id tags - Let's have options on how they are used
#1
(2019-05-01, 18:25)HeresJohnny Wrote: If you just applied musicbrainz tags you're shit out of luck for the moment
Quite frankly, I'm not overly enthusiastic about MB in any case. From a technical standpoint I can see how it looked like a good idea at the time to have a comprehensive database that distinguishes between almost similar (and therefore easy to confuse) albums through unique IDs and to provide a strong implementation for it in Kodi. But MB itself leaves a lot to be desired. Firstly, from a user experience standpoint it is a pain to tag everything correctly since the MB user interface is about as friendly as an enraged Dobermann. Wink And don't even get me started on the difficulty of finding an album in MB: in nine out of ten cases Google is the only way to find what you're looking for. And you have to, because more often than not Picard's lookup is so hit-and-miss that it's just about useless (especially when you're trying to re-tag MP3s that have been ripped years ago, as I've been trying to do) and you end up tagging the right album manually in your web browser. (Which, in all fairness, was a brilliant thing to implement in MB and Picard, because this feature essentially saves the day at the end.)

Secondly there's the fact that Kodi will use MB tags over the ones you can manually edit and that this is not optional. MB, being a user-populated database, is often incorrect and/or inconsistent. I have mentioned that already in another recent thread (on which Dave one again gave excellent advise, which I deeply appreciate) and outlined the problems of one album in a series being listed as having an album artist, another in the same series as being by "various artists" and that in order to edit that and have Kodi respond accordingly you can't leave the MB tags untouched. In other words, if I want to correct MBs inaccuracies in the Album Artist field especially, I need to either add the MB tag (which seems weird, because now the MB tag in my MP3 no longer corresponds with the MB tag in MB) or nuke the MB tag entirely (which seems a shame because team Kodi put a lot of hard work in providing a solid MB implementation).

Then why, I hear you say, don't I simply contribute something by correcting the MB entries? Good point. And I tried! But it's a pain when you have several hundred albums that need to be made consistent. Scripted tagging on your local music collection is a lot easier.

In short: in my opinion MB is a good idea that would be even greater if it were optional rather than enforced. At this point in time I'm very close to nuking all MB tags in my entire music library because to me they're more a pain than a boon. Which is a shame, because I can see all the work and passion and enthusiasm that has gone into their implementation and it pains me to have  to discard all that.

A checkbox somewhere in Kodi that would let me choose between MB-prioritized MP3 sorting and "traditional" human-readable tag sorting would give us the best of both worlds. Not sure if that would be easy to implement or not, but I'm just putting it out there anyway. Tongue

In closing, thanks to all team Kodi members for their hard work!!
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#2
@frankvw you have obviously had some frustrations with tagging, so I have split your moan about Musicbrainz id tags use into a thread of its own to discuss it futher.

You note it is a good idea to have such a database that can uniquely identify artists and albums (releases) but are frustrated in using it, that is something to raise politely on the MB forum with the volunteers that create and maintain it.  Maybe there are just extra tools or ways of using it you need to discover, your needs exceeding your current expertise. Be prepared to grow rather than have others make the world a simpler place. Smile

What I'm interested is comments on how Kodi uses mbid tags
(2019-05-01, 19:21)frankvw Wrote: Secondly there's the fact that Kodi will use MB tags over the ones you can manually edit and that this is not optional.
All tags can be manually edited if you want to, and the inclusion of Musicbrainz id tags is entirely optional. Kodi uses them with the other tags, they do not really take presedence but do influence how the process of translating tags embedded in files into songs, albums and artists works.
 
(2019-05-01, 19:21)frankvw Wrote: Accordingly you can't leave the MB tags untouched. In other words, if I want to correct MBs inaccuracies in the Album Artist field especially, I need to either add the MB tag (which seems weird, because now the MB tag in my MP3 no longer corresponds with the MB tag in MB) or nuke the MB tag entirely (which seems a shame because team Kodi put a lot of hard work in providing a solid MB implementation).
Yes tags have to be consistently in mbid/name pairs. Is that really so unreasonable? Picard produces that automatically, it is only when you manually edit that you need to pay attention.
 
(2019-05-01, 19:21)frankvw Wrote: In short: in my opinion MB is a good idea that would be even greater if it were optional rather than enforced. At this point in time I'm very close to nuking all MB tags in my entire music library because to me they're more a pain than a boon. Which is a shame, because I can see all the work and passion and enthusiasm that has gone into their implementation and it pains me to have  to discard all that.
I would encourage you not to "nuke" everything. An alternative would be to tag those albums that you are happy with the Musicbrainz entry using mbid tags, and skip those where you are not. Kodi does not mind if some albums have mbid tags and others don't, all it requires is that if one music file from an album has them then all the music files of that album do, and that if you have mbids then they consistently match the related artist tags in that music file.

But I am intereseted in how you see what Kodi does as somehow forcing you to do something that you want optional.
(2019-05-01, 19:21)frankvw Wrote: A checkbox somewhere in Kodi that would let me choose between MB-prioritized MP3 sorting and "traditional" human-readable tag sorting would give us the best of both worlds. Not sure if that would be easy to implement or not, but I'm just putting it out there anyway. Tongue
I don't understand, please explain. The user tags their music files with artist and album mbid tags and artist name and album title tags, how could Kodi process them to identify and derive artists and albums?

If you just want Kodi to ignore the mbids then don't tag with them in the first place. They don't get into music files by accident! On the other hand if you have other suggestions then explain, or if you have a specific use case then make that clear. I'm always happy to discuss ideas.
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#3
I've looked at various data dictionaries and semantics for music and my conclusion is that MB has achieved a better level of consistency than other sources.  There is still a major divide between "classical" and "non-classical", but MB does provide entities such as "work" which can mitigate the divide.  The classical/non-classical problem seems to be one that all databases share.

Since Kodi only implements a portion of what MB does, it can't do all the relations that MB does.  And of course MB like so many others has the problem of data correctness.  That's different from the data model though.  (I must admit, what I know of RDBMS is from uni classes, my professional life was in hard real-time systems).

Secondarily, MB is useful for providing a unique identifier for entities and I don't see a viable alternative for that.

scott s.
.
maintainer of skin  Aeon MQ5 mods for post-Gotham Kodi releases:
Krypton
Leia
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#4
(2019-05-02, 09:35)DaveBlake Wrote:
(2019-05-01, 19:21)frankvw Wrote: A checkbox somewhere in Kodi that would let me choose between MB-prioritized MP3 sorting and "traditional" human-readable tag sorting would give us the best of both worlds. Not sure if that would be easy to implement or not, but I'm just putting it out there anyway. Tongue
I don't understand, please explain. The user tags their music files with artist and album mbid tags and artist name and album title tags, how could Kodi process them to identify and derive artists and albums?  
If an MP3 (or WMA or FLAC) file contains no Musicbrainz tags, then Kodi simply categorizes albums by album title, album artist, track title, track artist, or whatever the case may be. If the contents of that tag are incorrect, they can be edited using any MP3 tagger and Kodi will re-categorize according to the new (edited) tag contents.

If an MP3 (or WMA or FLAC) file does contain Musicbrainz tags, then Kodi will use those to categorize albums. E.g. all compilations having the MB tag for "various artists" will be treated as such. If the contents of the tags are incorrect, editing the human-readable versions of album artist etc. will have no effect since Kodi still uses the MB tags.

Editing the (machine-readable) MB tags seems a little silly, because the whole idea of MB tags is to have consistency between local music libraries and the MB database. Nuking the MB tags seems indicated in that case.

However, if Kodi simply had a configurable option to switch between sorting by MB tag on the one hand or ignoring the MB tag and using the human-readable tags instead, we would not be having this discussion.

Don't get me wrong: MB has its advantages and I can understand the decision to make use of them. My problem is the fact that if MB categorizes things differently from what makes sense to me, getting around it is a pain, and making the use of MB tags rather than the human-readable tags optional seems a good way to address that.

Anyway, that's one man's opinion... Smile
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#5
It sounds like your MBID tags are coming from scraping within Kodi?   My preference is to use an editor to write the tags to the files rather than trust the scrapers.

scott s.
.
maintainer of skin  Aeon MQ5 mods for post-Gotham Kodi releases:
Krypton
Leia
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#6
Oh, the old "turn off the use Musicbrainz id tags because I don't like them" request. Well Musicbrainz id tags are already entirely optional - if you don't want Kodi to use them then don't tag your music files with them!

I was thinking you had some other interesting suggestion to make. As I have said elsewhere your best approach for those albums where you don't agree with how Musicbrainz credits the artist is simply not to tag the music files from those albums with Musicbrainz Id tags.

But some points I want to correct for anyone reading this later, and to give some of the reasoning behind why things are done as they are.
(2019-05-04, 13:01)frankvw Wrote: If an MP3 (or WMA or FLAC) file does contain Musicbrainz tags, then Kodi will use those to categorize albums. E.g. all compilations having the MB tag for "various artists" will be treated as such. If the contents of the tags are incorrect, editing the human-readable versions of album artist etc. will have no effect since Kodi still uses the MB tags.
No, the ARTIST and ALBUMARTIST tags will have an effect they are not ignored, Kodi uses the Musicbrainz id tags in combination with all the other tags. The problem is when these tags are inconsistently edited the effect is not the desired outcome.
(2019-05-04, 13:01)frankvw Wrote: Editing the (machine-readable) MB tags seems a little silly, because the whole idea of MB tags is to have consistency between local music libraries and the MB database.
Actualy no that is not the whole idea of having Musicbrainz id tags, it is much more about having a unique id for artists and albums common to numerous other online resources. But you do need to take care if editing these tags that you do so consistently - pairing up ARTIST and MB id tags accurately.
(2019-05-04, 13:01)frankvw Wrote: However, if Kodi simply had a configurable option to switch between sorting by MB tag on the one hand or ignoring the MB tag and using the human-readable tags instead, we would not be having this discussion.
If you want Kodi to ignore tags then don't include them, after all there is no point having them if they are being ignored. By using the tagging as the configuration option you can use mbid tags for albums where you want the benefits and op out of doing so by not adding them for the albums where you don't. Far more configureable than any general settings.
(2019-05-04, 13:01)frankvw Wrote: Don't get me wrong: MB has its advantages and I can understand the decision to make use of them. My problem is the fact that if MB categorizes things differently from what makes sense to me, getting around it is a pain, and making the use of MB tags rather than the human-readable tags optional seems a good way to address that.
Some of the Musicbrainz entries credit artists and album artists differently from the way you want, you have a number of possible responses.
a) Edit the Musicbrainz database entry (if there is error on inconsistency this is a helpful thing for the community as a whole)
b) Carefully and consistently edit the artist name(s) mbid tag pairs - editing is fine, but in pairs
c) Remove the MB id tags from all the music files of that album (or don't tag that album with Picard in the first place)

A general "ignore mbid tag when scanning" setting applied to the entire music library (causing a rescan of all music whenever it is changed) would not be very flexible or helpful in comparison to this range of options the user already has.

@frankvw I doubt I have pursuaded you to change your opinion, (and you are welcome to have and express it) but I do like to try. Smile

If anyone has another suggestion to make I am happy to discuss it.
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#7
(2019-05-05, 00:31)scott967 Wrote: It sounds like your MBID tags are coming from scraping within Kodi?   My preference is to use an editor to write the tags to the files rather than trust the scrapers.

scott s.
.
I followed the recommended practice, which is to use Musicbrainz Picard to tag audio files. Picard is essentially a Musicbrainz client (it can't and won't use info from, say, Discogs so if something is not in MB you're stuck as far as Picard is concerned) and it always includes a shovelful of MBID tags.
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Musicbranz id tags - Let's have options on how they are used00