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Costello, Elvis - Trust - Super Hot Stamper

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

Super Hot Stamper

Elvis Costello
Trust

Regular price
$349.99
Regular price
Sale price
$349.99
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per 
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Sonic Grade

Side One:

Side Two:

Vinyl Grade

Side One: Mint Minus to Mint Minus Minus

Side Two: Mint Minus Minus

  • Trust is back on the site with superb Double Plus (A++) grades on both sides of this original UK import pressing
  • This copy has Demo Disc sound guaranteed to knock you right out of your listening chair
  • The clarity and transparency allow you to appreciate subtleties in the high end even when the bass and drums are really POUNDING
  • 5 stars: "…their most ambitious and eclectic album to date… Costello & the Attractions demonstrate their musical skill and savvy by essentially sticking to the direct sound of their four-piece band. In the process, they recorded, arguably, their most impressive album, one that demonstrates all sides of Costello’s songwriting and performing personality without succumbing to pretentiousness."

More Elvis Costello / More New Wave

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Vintage covers for this album are hard to find in exceptionally clean shape. Most of the will have at least some amount of ringwear, seam wear and edge wear. We guarantee that the cover we supply with this Hot Stamper is at least VG


This copy has The Big Sound that lets this music REALLY ROCK. There’s a TON of low-end on this record; regrettably, most copies suffer from either a lack of bass or a lack of bass definition. I can’t tell you how much you’re missing when the bass isn’t right on this album. It’s without a doubt THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECT of the sound on this album.

When the bass is right, everything falls into place, and the music comes powerfully to life. When the bass is lacking or ill-defined, the music seems labored; the moment-to-moment rhythmic changes in the songs blur together, and the band just doesn’t swing the way it’s supposed to.

This vintage UK import 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 Trust 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 even as late as 1981
  • 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.

These are The Attractions: the pro’s pros. You can’t ask for better, and as expected they deliver big time on this album. But the mastering and pressing problems of most British copies typically make them sound half-hearted and uninspired, which is certainly nothing like what they sound like on the master tape. On the master tape, they play GREAT. You need a very special copy of the LP to hear them play that way, and that’s all there is to it. The better the pressing, the better the band.

What We're Listening For On Trust

  • 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.

Whomp Factor

On the best copies, you get the full-on bottom end WHOMP you paid for, with no loss in control. You can clearly follow Bruce Thomas’s bass lines throughout the songs, a real treat for any music lover. (He and Elvis don’t get along, hence the end of the Attractions as his backing band. I guess we should be thankful for the nine albums on which they were together; many of them are Desert Island Discs for me.) Not only that, but the drums have real body and resonance, a far cry from the wimpy cardboard drum sound you’ll hear on most pressings.

The overall clarity and transparency here are superb, allowing you to appreciate subtleties in the top end even when the bass and drums are really pounding. Play Whisper to a Scream for some of the best pounding on the album. If that song doesn’t get your blood pumping, you need a bypass to unblock a few arteries, stat.

Domestic Vinyl

We played a domestic copy of this album, just for fun you might say, and sure enough, it was a real mess. Boosted highs, poor bass definition and copious amounts of grit and grain -- ’70s Columbia at their best, what else is new? The first album and Spike are the only Elvis records I know of that sound good on domestic vinyl. Forget the rest.

If you love Elvis Costello as much as we do around here, we suggest you do yourself a favor and trash your domestic LPs -- you need a British copy to even get in the ballpark, and that’s far from a guarantee of good sound. Elvis is “Still the King,” but you would never know it without the right pressing -- like this one.

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.

Track Commentary

The Tracklist tab above will take you to a select song breakdown for each side, with plenty of What to Listen For advice. Other records with track breakdowns can be found here.

A Must Own Rock Record

Trust (along with My Aim Is True and Armed Forces) is as good as it gets for Elvis on LP. All three are absolute Must Owns that belong in any serious Rock Collection.

Others that belong in that category can be found here.

Side One

  • Clubland
  • Lovers’ Walk
  • Listen to the buildup before the drummer switches to a straight ahead beat eaely in the song. On a good copy with lots of dynamics, you’ll hear the musicians playing their instruments harder and harder until the ultimate tension release. Without good dynamics, there’s no payoff.
  • You’ll Never Be a Man
  • Pretty Words
  • Strict Time
  • Luxembourg
  • Watch Your Step

Side Two

  • New Lace Sleeves
  • From a Whisper to a Scream
  • Apart from being one of my all time favorite Elvis Costello songs (with another idol of mine joining in, Glenn Tilbrook of Squeeze), this one is a great test track for side two. The best copies have lots of deep bass with excellent definition that allow the song to really get going. You should be able to hear lots of ambience around the vocals and the drums, and the sound should be big enough to fill a room.
  • Different Finger
  • White Knuckles
  • Shot With His Own Gun
  • Fish ‘N’ Chip Paper
  • Big Sister’s Clothes

I pretty much agree with the AMG review below.

This is that rare breed of music that never sounds dated (especially considering the era in which it was produced). Music with real depth such as this only gets better with the passage of time. The more you play it, the more you appreciate it, and the more you love it.

AMG 5 Star Rave Review

Following the frenzied pop-soul of Get Happy!!, Elvis Costello & the Attractions quickly returned to the studio and recorded Trust, their most ambitious and eclectic album to date… Costello & the Attractions demonstrate their musical skill and savvy by essentially sticking to the direct sound of their four-piece band. In the process, they recorded, arguably, their most impressive album, one that demonstrates all sides of Costello’s songwriting and performing personality without succumbing to pretentiousness.

More Rave Reviews

In a 4/5 star review for Rolling Stone, Ken Tucker wrote “from the Elvis Presley-style echoes of “Luxembourg” to the duet that Costello sings with Squeeze’s Glenn Tilbrook. In “From a Whisper to a Scream,” Costello’s sour croon and Tilbrook’s sweet moan swoop and dive around each other in joyous comradeship”. Rolling Stone later revised the album, giving it a 5 star rating.

Robert Christgau of the Village Voice gave it an A, and wrote “this is rock and roll as eloquent, hard-hitting pop, and Elvis has turned into such a soul man that I no longer wish he’d change his name to George and go country."