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 - Julia Dream - Japanese - 7" vinyl - £75.00, $83.25, €85.50 (New Item) (arrived 03-Oct-2022 11:27)
PINK FLOYD Julia Dream (1972 original Japanese Odeon 7" black vinyl single manufactured by Toshiba Musical Industries Ltd, also including Summer '68, with a unique wrap-around picture insert with the '¥ 400' price point printed on the front & lyrics inside. Theinsert displays minimal wear or signs of age, whilst the vinyl looks barely played. An outstanding example OR-2840)
- Pink Floyd - Meddle - 1st - EX - UK - vinyl LP - £195.00, $216.45, €222.30 (Back In Stock) (arrived 26-Sep-2022 13:06)
PINK FLOYD Meddle (1971 UK first press 6-track vinyl LP with 'Gramophone Co' label perimeter text, fully textured gatefold picture sleeve with 'Patent No.' text on the bottom right inside panel. The sleeve shows only minimal signs of shelfwear with just a few spots of corner/spine rubbing, minor edgewear and is otherwise in Excellent shape. The label has a few spindle marks, however the vinyl remains in stunning condition with minimal evidence of light play. A fantastic copy of this Floyd classic! SHVL795)
- Pink Floyd - Meddle - EX - Canadian - vinyl LP - £20.00, $22.20, €22.80 (New Item) (arrived 25-Sep-2022 13:35)
PINK FLOYD Meddle (Late 70s Canadian issue of the 1971 6-track LP on the green Harvest label, including the single One Of These Days/ Fearless, housed in a unique blue tinted gatefold picture sleeve. The sleeve [VG+] shows a little minor scuffing with no deletion cuts [tiny number annotation in a corner] & the vinyl is clean & in Excellent condition with few signs of play SMAS-832)
- Pink Floyd - Atom Heart Mother - Black Label - UK - vinyl LP - £25.00, $27.75, €28.50 (New Item) (arrived 26-Sep-2022 10:35)
PINK FLOYD Atom Heart Mother (1988 UK issue of the 1970 5-track LP on the black & silver EMI Harvest label, the fourth studio album from the iconic prog band, recorded at the legendary Abbey Road Studios, barcoded gatefold picture sleeve. Thesleeve shows minimal wear & the vinyl looks barely played SHVL781)
- Pink Floyd - The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn - barcoded p/s - UK - vinyl LP - £35.00, $38.85, €39.90 (New Item) (arrived 26-Sep-2022 10:45)
PINK FLOYD The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn (1988 UK Fame issue of the classic 1967 11-track vinyl LP, barcoded picture sleeve. The sleeve shows only light signs of edge wear & the vinyl looks barely played. A landmark British psych record FA3065)
- Pink Floyd - A Momentary Lapse Of Reason - EX - UK - vinyl LP - £35.00, $38.85, €39.90 (New Item) (arrived 26-Sep-2022 10:46)
PINK FLOYD A Momentary Lapse Of Reason (1987 UK 11-track LP with picture labels, the group's first album after the departure of Roger Waters, gatefold picture sleeve with illustrated lyric inner. The sleeve is in Excellent condition with lightedgewear & the vinyl is Excellent to Near Mint with few signs of play EMD1003)
- Pink Floyd - Delicate Sound Of Thunder - VG - UK - 2-LP vinyl set - £40.00, $44.40, €45.60 (New Item) (arrived 26-Sep-2022 10:53)
PINK FLOYD Delicate Sound Of Thunder (1988 UK 14-track double LP, recorded live over five nights at the Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, New York in August that year, gatefold picture sleeve with illustrated credit inners. The sleeve has some notable general wear, whilst the vinyl shows moderate scuffing leaving it VG EQ5009)
- Pink Floyd - The Final Cut - 3rd - Stickered - UK - vinyl LP - £25.00, $27.75, €28.50 (New Item) (arrived 26-Sep-2022 11:08)
PINK FLOYD The Final Cut (Late 80s UK issue of the 1983 12-track vinyl LP with picture labels, glossy title stickered barcoded gatefold picture sleeve with lyrics inside. The sleeve shows only light signs of its age & the vinyl looks barely played SHPF1983)
- Pink Floyd - A Collection Of Great Dance Songs - UK - vinyl LP - £15.00, $16.65, €17.10 (New Item) (arrived 26-Sep-2022 11:12)
PINK FLOYD A Collection Of Great Dance Songs (1990 UK Fame issue of the 1981 UK 6-track LP, complete with picture inner. The picture sleeve & vinyl remain in excellent condition FA4131441)
- Pink Floyd - The Final Cut - 2nd - Stickered - UK - vinyl LP - £40.00, $44.40, €45.60 (New Item) (arrived 27-Sep-2022 10:22)
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)