30 Day Money Back Guarantee

Bush, Kate - Lionheart - Super Hot Stamper

The copy we are selling is similar to the one pictured above.

Super Hot Stamper

Kate Bush
Lionheart

Regular price
$299.99
Regular price
Sale price
$299.99
Unit price
per 
Availability
Sold out

Sonic Grade

Side One:

Side Two:

Vinyl Grade

Side One: Mint Minus Minus (closer to M-- to EX++ in parts)*

Side Two: Mint Minus Minus (closer to M-- to EX++ in parts)*

  • An original UK pressing of Kate's sophomore LP (one of only a handful to ever hit the site) with solid Double Plus (A++) grades or BETTER from top to bottom
  • Side two was sonically very close to our Shootout Winner - you will be shocked at how big and powerful the sound is
  • We shot out a number of other imports and this one had the midrange presence, bass, and dynamics that were missing from most other copies we played
  • It's dramatically richer, fuller and more Tubey Magical, with Kate's wonderfully present and breathy vocals front and center where they belong

More Art Rock / More Women Who Rock

100% Money Back Guarantee on all Hot Stampers

FREE Domestic Shipping on all LP orders over $150

*NOTE: This record was not noisy enough to rate our M-- to EX++ grade, but it's not quite up to our standards for Mint Minus Minus either. If you're looking for quiet vinyl, this is probably not the best copy for you.


This vintage British pressing has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern records can barely BEGIN to reproduce. Folks, that sound is gone and it sure isn't showing signs of coming back. If you love hearing INTO a recording, actually being able to "see" the performers, and feeling as if you are sitting in the studio with the band, this is the record for you. It's what vintage all analog recordings are known for --this sound.

If you exclusively play modern repressings of vintage recordings, I can say without fear of contradiction that you have never heard this kind of sound on vinyl. Old records have it -- not often, and certainly not always -- but maybe one out of a hundred new records do, and those are some pretty long odds.

What The Best Sides Of Lionheart Have To Offer Is Not Hard To Hear

  • The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
  • The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1978
  • Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
  • Natural tonality in the midrange -- with all the instruments having the correct timbre
  • Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional studio space

No doubt there's more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is the only way to hear all of the qualities we discuss above, and playing the best pressings against a pile of other copies under rigorously controlled conditions is the only way to find a pressing that sounds as good as this one does.

Pop and Rock Shootouts

What are the sonic qualities by which a Pop or Rock record -- any Pop or Rock record -- should be judged?

Pretty much the ones we discuss in most of our Hot Stamper listings: energy, vocal presence, frequency extension (on both ends), transparency, spaciousness, harmonic textures (freedom from smear is key), rhythmic drive, tonal correctness, fullness, richness, three-dimensionality, and on and on down the list.

When we can get a number of these qualities to come together on the side we’re playing, we provisionally give it a ballpark Hot Stamper grade, a grade that is often revised during the shootout as we hear what the other copies are doing, both good and bad.

Once we’ve been through all the side ones, we play the best of the best against each other and arrive at a winner for that side. Other copies from earlier in the shootout will frequently have their grades raised or lowered based on how they sounded compared to the eventual shootout winner. If we’re not sure about any pressing, perhaps because we played it early on in the shootout before we had learned what to listen for, we take the time to play it again.

Repeat the process for side two and the shootout is officially over. All that’s left is to see how the sides of each pressing match up.

It may not be rocket science, but it’s a science of a kind, one with strict protocols that we’ve developed over the course of many years to insure that the results we arrive at are as accurate as we can make them.

The result of all our work speaks for itself, on this very record in fact. We guarantee you have never heard this music sound better than it does on our Hot Stamper pressing -- or your money back.

What We're Listening For On Lionheart

  • Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
  • Then: presence and immediacy. The vocals aren't "back there" somewhere, lost in the mix. They're front and center where any recording engineer worth his salt would put them.
  • The Big Sound comes next -- wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
  • Then transient information -- fast, clear, sharp attacks, not the smear and thickness so common to these LPs.
  • Tight punchy bass -- which ties in with good transient information, also the issue of frequency extension further down.
  • Next: transparency -- the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the instruments.
  • Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing -- an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.

Vinyl Condition

Mint Minus Minus and maybe a bit better is about as quiet as any vintage pressing will play, and since only the right vintage pressings have any hope of sounding good on this album, that will most often be the playing condition of the copies we sell. (The copies that are even a bit noisier get listed on the site are seriously reduced prices or traded back in to the local record stores we shop at.)

Those of you looking for quiet vinyl will have to settle for the sound of other pressings and Heavy Vinyl reissues, purchased elsewhere of course as we have no interest in selling records that don't have the vintage analog magic of these wonderful recordings.

If you want to make the trade-off between bad sound and quiet surfaces with whatever Heavy Vinyl pressing might be available, well, that's certainly your prerogative, but we can't imagine losing what's good about this music -- the size, the energy, the presence, the clarity, the weight -- just to hear it with less background noise.

Side One

  • Symphony In Blue
  • In Search Of Peter Pan
  • Wow
  • Don't Push Your Foot On The Heartbrake
  • Oh England My Lionheart

Side Two

  • Fullhouse
  • In The Warm Room
  • Kashka From Baghdad
  • Coffee Homeground
  • Hammer Horror

About the Album

Following the success of her debut album, Kate Bush's record company EMI were eager to get another out. Bush had composed many songs throughout her teens (she was at this time 19 years old) and the majority of the tracks used for Lionheart were compositions from before her debut. Recorded entirely at Super Bear Studios in Berre-les-Alpes on the French Riviera, this was to be her only album recorded outside the UK. Of the ten tracks, only "Symphony in Blue," "Fullhouse," and "Coffee Homeground" were newly composed songs, although the other songs had been reworked by Bush in preparation for the recording. The album was produced, like her first, by Andrew Powell, with Bush feeling that she was at this stage too inexperienced to produce it herself (she would go on to produce all her following albums).

Literary references include J. M. Barrie's Peter Pan in "In Search of Peter Pan" (a song which also quotes "When You Wish Upon a Star" from the Disney film Pinocchio), as well as a nod towards Arsenic and Old Lace in the song "Coffee Homeground," which despite being similar in plot to the play, was inspired by a taxi driver who drove Bush once. Film references include "Hammer Horror," while although taking its name from the Hammer Film studios, is actually about a production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame. The British television show The Sweeney, a popular police drama from the 1970s, was mentioned in the lyrics of the song "Wow," which is a song about the music business and show business in general. "Kashka from Baghdad," inspired by American detective series, is about the inhabitants of a town wondering about a couple living in an old house.

Lionheart was the first Kate Bush album to feature Del Palmer, who played bass and had previously been in the KT Bush Band. Palmer went on to play bass, or to engineer and record on every subsequent Kate Bush album up to and including 50 Words for Snow (2011).

-Wikipedia