The most beautiful and intriguing music record covers.
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In the Court of the Crimson King (subtitled An Observation by King Crimson) is the debut studio album from the English rock band King Crimson, released on 10 October 1969 on Island Records. The album is considered to be one of the first and most influential of the progressive rock genre, where the band largely departed from the blues influences that rock music founded upon and combined elements of jazz, classical, and symphonic music.
The album reached No. 5 on the UK Album Chart and No. 28 on the US Billboard 200, where it was certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America. The album was reissued several times in the 1980s and 1990s made with inferior copies of the master tapes. After the masters were located in 2003, a 40th Anniversary edition of the album was released in 2009 with new stereo and 5.1 surround sound mixes by Steven Wilson.
The album's cover as seen on the original
1972 vinyl LP
There have been differences in the look of the Ziggy Stardust album cover in various countries and over time. The most common have been in slight colour variation (the exact colour shades have varied – probably due to the different colours used in printing runs), cropping of the cover photograph (slightly more or less of the building and sky being shown) and most noticeably – in the text size and placement (there have been variations in both the size and placement of the title lettering).
Design Brian Ward – Photography
Terry Pastor of Main Artery – Colouring
Released June 1972
Producers Ken Scott, David Bowie
The image above is of the album’s rear cover as seen on the original 1972 LP. Like the front cover – there are slight differences to be found in the releases for different countries and over time. The most common are slight colour variation (i.e. the exact colour shades vary – probably due to the different colours used in printing runs), cropping (i.e. slightly more or less of the phone box is shown) and border surrounds (i.e. some have white borders, some black, most have no borders).
The “A GEM PRODUCTION” logo appeared solo on all Ziggy Stardust LPs before December 1972. After December 1972 all David Bowie LPs carried the “MAINMAN” logo as well. Hence, the image above was a later production LP.The most famous difference is the 1972 Spanish Ziggy Stardust LP’s rear cover which was printed in duotone blue and not colour as above.
A notable feature of the rear cover are the famous words/instruction appearing at the bottom left corner: “TO BE PLAYED AT MAXIMUM VOLUME” (this is now missing on the new 1999 EMI / Virgin CD release!). Also of interest is possible finger-writing on the glass. Check out the left pane – second from the top. Is that the letter “B” for Bowie?