There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that Pink Floyd’s 1973 opus, Dark Side of the Moon, is one of the most iconic albums of all time. The Hipgnosis designed sleeve, A prism refracting white light into a rainbow on a black background, is in some cases more recognisable than the music itself. Even those who haven’t heard a note of Pink Floyd’s music will know what it is. Then, however, something different appeared on the market from Japan.
While details are somewhat scarce, is said that this alternative sleeve was created sometime in late 1977 or 1978 for Toshiba-EMI’s (TOEMI) mail-order only record club in Japan. These were a popular marketing tool in Japan at this time, and it is believed TOEMI wanted to expand their international artist repertoire through their club releases.
The unique sleeve artwork depicts a live stage scene from their 1977 Animals Tour, which adds to the narrative that this was released between 1977/78. The famous tan and red EMI label design also supports this date range. Further evidence in support of its record club origin is that there is very little on the sleeve or label that’s printed in English. The song titles, band name and album title of course, but very little else. The back cover is virtually all Japanese script. The lyric insert is similarly basic, albeit with English lyrics.
This is, without doubt, the rarest pressing of The Dark Side of the Moon, and it’s widely regarded to be the rarest Pink Floyd record never issued. This has sold as high as £3500, and is one of the ultimate investment pieces. Regardless of its origin and the divided opinion about when and why it was manufactured, there is no doubt about its authenticity and extreme rarity.
This article appeared in issue 25 of Long Live Vinyl magazine, available now
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- Pink Floyd - Obscured By Clouds - 2nd - New Zealand - vinyl LP - £40.00, $49.20, €44.80 (New Item) (arrived 02-Feb-2023 14:18)
PINK FLOYD Obscured By Clouds (1972 New Zealand second pressing 10-track stereo LP on the Harvest label with 'EMI New Zealand' perimeter text, featuring music from the soundtrack to the film 'La Vallée'. Housed in a glossy picture sleeve with printed 'La Vallee' flash in the top right corner. The sleeve shows a little light edgewear and the vinyl looks barely played SHSP4020)
- Pink Floyd - Return To The Dark Side Of The Moon - UK - vinyl LP - £35.00, $43.05, €39.20 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:46)
VARIOUS Return To The Dark Side Of The Moon (2010 UK exclusive Limited Collector's Edition 10-track LP pressed on Heavyweight Vinyl, which sees a variety of top artists re-interpret songs from the classic album, including The PineappleThief, Doug Paisley, Gallops & more. Comes housed in a unique gatefold picture sleeve with a nice obi-strip type paper cover band & complete with the original magazine in the original pvc dust jacket. The vinyl is unplayed MOJ002)
- Pink Floyd - A Saucerful Of Secrets - RSD19 - Mono - Sealed - UK - vinyl LP - £39.99, $49.19, €44.79 (New Item) (arrived 30-Jan-2023 17:16)
PINK FLOYD A Saucerful Of Secrets (2019 UK/EU limited edition 7-track LP, their classic album remastered from the original MONO mix analogue tapes. Released exclusively for Record Store Day and pressed on 180gram Heavyweight Vinyl. Factory sealed from new inside a reproduction of the original Hipgnosis-designed picture sleeve, with its hype sticker intact) **Limited to 6500 Copies**
- Pink Floyd - The Wall - 1st + Sticker - VG - UK - 2-LP vinyl set - £75.00, $92.25, €84.00 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:10)
PINK FLOYD The Wall (1979 UK 26-track double LP with picture labels, gatefold picture sleeve with matching card lyric inners & loose artist/album title sticker. The sleeve shows light wear with moderate foxing to the inners and a seam split to one; the sticker is creased from being stored in the sleeve and the vinyl is EX- with little evidence of play SHDW411)
- Pink Floyd - Relics - 1st - UK - vinyl LP - £60.00, $73.80, €67.20 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:38)
PINK FLOYD Relics (1971 UK first issue 11-track stereo LP compilation, housed in the textured picture sleeve with the original black & white Nick Mason artwork. The sleeve is Excellent with few signs of age and the vinyl remains NM- with very little evidence of play. A superb collector's copy SRS5071)
- Pink Floyd - The Final Cut - 2nd - Australian - vinyl LP - £75.00, $92.25, €84.00 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:39)
PINK FLOYD The Final Cut (Scarce 1983 Australian second issue of the 12-track LP with 'All tracks published by CBS' label print, the last studio album to feature Roger Waters with the bassist on writing, artwork & vocal duties, gatefold picture sleeve with lyric content sticker & jet black inner. Both the sleeve & vinyl are near mint SBP237817)
- Pink Floyd - Relics - 1st - UK - vinyl LP - £20.00, $24.60, €22.40 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:40)
PINK FLOYD Relics (1978 UK issue of the 1971 11-track compilation LP, front laminated picture sleeve designed by Nick Mason. The sleeve shows minimal shelfwear & the vinyl remains near 'as new' with little sign of play MFP50397)
- Pink Floyd - The Final Cut - 2nd - Stickered - UK - vinyl LP - £40.00, $49.20, €44.80 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:44)
PINK FLOYD The Final Cut (1983 UK 12-track vinyl LP with picture labels, housed in the title stickered gatefold picture sleeve with lyrics across the inner spread & black coded inner. The sleeve shows minimal wear and the vinyl looks barely played SHPF1983)
- Pink Floyd - The Wall - German - 2-LP vinyl set - £30.00, $36.90, €33.60 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:45)
PINK FLOYD The Wall (1979 German issue 26-track double vinyl LP with picture labels, housed in a gatefold picture sleeve with matching lyric inners. The sleeve & inners shows just a little light age yellowing at the edges and whilst the vinyl hasa few light scuffs/hairlines, overall this is an excellent play copy 1C198-63410/11)
- Pink Floyd - A Foot In The Door (The Best Of Pink Floyd) - 180g - Sealed - UK - 2-LP vinyl set - £39.99, $49.19, €44.79 (New Item) (arrived 31-Jan-2023 15:47)
PINK FLOYD A Foot In The Door (2018 UK/EU limited edition remastered 16-track 2-LP pressed on 180gram Heavyweight Vinyl, the debut release on vinyl of their 2011 'Best Of' compilation album. Includes Hey You, See Emily Play, Another Brick In The Wall [Part 2], Wish You Were Here, Money, Comfortably Numb, Shine On You Crazy Diamond Parts 1-5 and much more. Gatefold picture sleeve designed at StormStudios under the creative direction of Aubrey Powell, factory sealed with its 'speech bubble' hype-sticker intact. Essential!)