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The Mini LP Format turns 15 E-mail
ELP's first three albums - the first ever true Japanese mini LPs

21st September 2009 marked the 15th anniversary of the Mini LP format - or did it?

Victor's release of Emerson, Lake and Palmer's first three albums (their first self titled album, Tarkus and Pictures at an Exhibition) appears to have been the first Japanese home grown rock release that attempted to accurately reproduce the original vinyl jackets.

These had been preceeded by a much earlier Santana Lotus and a US release of some Rolling Stones albums repackaged for Japan a few short months before these. Neither of these earlier releases was true to the original vinyl although the Stones came close.

The jury's still out on this one, but it seems likely that "Universal Victor" released two sets of jazz releases: MVCZ-26 to MVCZ-35 on 1994-March-02 and MVCZ-36 to MVCZ-45 on 1994-March-24 (see Keith Jarrett, Death and the Flower (MVCZ-40) for an example).

 
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Featured Releases (A selection of...)

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Front cover (main) image of WPCR-13517 : Yes : Yessongs
WPCR-13517 : 2009-07-22

"Finally after 36 years a correct version not only printed beautifully but also opening like a book, as it should." (Roger Dean)

The first reproduction of the original UK booklet style cover (however comes on 2 not 3 CDs). Earlier releases of this (AMCY-2733 and AMCY-6293) were created in the US "accordion" style.

Front cover (main) image of WPCR-14306 : Cooper, Alice : Welcome To My Nightmare
WPCR-14306 : 2012-01-18
Warner Music Japan : Cardboard sleeve (mini LP) reissue from Alice Cooper featuring the high-fidelity SHM-CD format (compatible with standard CD players) and 2011 remastering. The cardboard sleeve features single E-type jacket with an inner bag and ATLANTIC green/orange label. Comes with a description and lyrics. Part of a twelve-album Alice Cooper SHM-CD cardboard sleeve reissue series featuring albums "Pretties For You," "Easy Action," "Love It To Death," "Killer," "Schools's Out," "Billion Dollar Babies," "Muscle Of Love," "Welcome To My Nightmare," "Goes To Hell," "Lace And Whiskey," "The Alice Cooper Show," and "From The Inside."
 
Front cover (main) image of TOCP-65883 : Jethro Tull : Thick As A Brick +2
TOCP-65883 : 2001-10-31
The undisputed classic Jethro Tull album. The first full length concept album from Ian Anderson and, according the official web site, "a rock first: one continuous song on both sides"
Front cover (main) image of VICP-5442,3,4 : Emerson, Lake + Palmer : First True Japanese Mini LP Rock Release
VICP-5442,3,4 : 1994-09-21

The first three Emerson Lake and Palmer albums (self titled, Tarkus and Pictures at an Exhibition) are arguably the first true Rock Mini LPs. They were released on 21st September 1994.

These had been preceded by a much earlier Lotus and a US release of some Rolling Stones albums repackaged for Japan a few short months before these. Neither of these earlier releases was true to the original vinyl although the Stones came close.

The earliest true Minis were two series of MCA Jazz releases from March 1994 (MVCZ-26 to MVCZ-45) including this example: Death and The Flower.

 
Front cover (main) image of DU-SP110-0412P : Marley, Bob : Catch A Fire Box (Zippo Lighter)
DU-SP110-0412P : 2006-10-04
Zippo lighter gimmick box in the style of "Catch a Fire"
Front cover (main) image of EMICD-11228 : Pink Floyd : Oh By The Way: European Box Set
EMICD-11228 : 2007-11-26

16 CD box set - being 14 studio albums including 2 doubles.

According to Pink Floyd Brain Damage site there were a few glitches with this release, the most notable being a misprinting of the inner bag for the second CD in "The Wall".

There are also cases of an album being missed out and duplicates in their places.

The later Japanese release of this box set is basically identical to this box set.

Poor quality fakes exist for this set - more details below.

The original Japanese individual releases are regarded as being of a much higher quality to either of these box sets.

You can see a YouTube video of this set on the videos page.

 

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