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Fallback to "Artist" tag when no "Album Artist" is found in Album Artist sort mode

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I have seen this mentioned on the forums but I wanted to add an entry on this forum so people can show support. Many people including myself prefer to browse by album artist and this is very important functionality for us¬†ūüėä

Right now I have about 500 albums in my collection and with the way Poweramp currently handles album artist mode, (I think it only takes that one tag into account), more than one hundred of those albums art not visible when I click on a particular artist because they are sorted into the unknown category. When I use another player like Musicbee or Blackplayer that falls back to the Artist tag 99.9% of my albums/tracks are sorted perfectly. I could theortically go thought my entire collection and retag all of the problems but this small piece of functionality fixes a very common issue. Other than this one inconvenience Poweramp is the best player I've found by far, including desktop players.


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I made sure my music collection is fully tagged with Album Artist tags as well as Artist tags, but I agree that can be a bit of a faff - although it really doesn't take long in decent batch tag editor, even for my 7,000 or so files. Also some audio files don't belong in albums anyway - singles for example, for which I just set the Album Artist tag to "(Singles)" for completeness and tidy sorting. I have a couple of other similarly customised Album Artist tags where I don't want separate album names for one-off tracks - such as "(Film Music)" and "(TV Themes)". 

It is a tricky one though, as Album Artist was really only intended for grouping purposes - otherwise Various Artists collections would get placed into dozens of different 'albums', one for each track-artist name. Outside of the Album Artists category, the tag doesn't really feature anywhere (e.g. in List Options sorting modes) other than in a couple of Settings to display them in preference to Artist tags in some views.

I guess it depends on what you are using the category for - many people seem to want it to generate a simplified list without all the collaborations within albums listed separately. So while using a fallback mode seems obvious, it might not work for everyone.

The best workaround solution for now though is to fix the tagging in your audio files. I actually found it quite cathartic, and I picked up a number of naming errors while I was at it. I also tidied up my Artist tags to consistently separate multiple artist names, so the new Split Multiple Artists feature works like a charm now.


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