(... of new releases, new-found rarities, discovery of oddities from the past...)

April 1, 2002
Vol.1, Issue 1
Welcome to the opening edition of the news window at "A Genesis Discography"!!!

What prompted me to start this page is the recent flood of pirated copies of the UK "Happy The Man" 7" PS release. There have been a number of these items sold on eBay already (by two different sellers, one of whom has used at least two different usernames.) There are two different ones, I have purchased both, received one, and am awaiting the second. The first may be a botched initial print of the second, which is being sold by a different user.

How to tell the original HTM from the fakes:
Lets start with the sleeves. The first fake, the one I have is very easy. The rear cover has the top and bottom edge of the front cover folded under the back cover, while the original had the front cover top and bottom flaps folding over the back cover. The chuckle here is that on those little fold over edges is where the "CB 181" was printed (on the top right of the back cover on the front's fold-over)... the fake sleeve obscured the "CB 181" with the mistaken fold-over of the back cover. Looking closer, the fake also had the "CB 181" at the left top of the back cover (albeit obscured) while it is on the right top on the original.

Original Issue Fake Issue

Similarly, the original had "Printed and made by the E. J. Day Group, London and Bedford" at the bottom right of the back cover, the fake has it under the "fold over", and at the bottom left.

Original Issue Fake Issue

Other details of the sleeve differences include the lack of "cut out" on the back side of the opening edge: the original had it, the fake does not.

Original Issue Fake Issue

Looking even closer, now at the front cover, the original was printed in a screen pattern. As such, the fake had to be "de-screened" to avoid the "moiree" effect of screening a screened image. If you look closely at PG's forehead on the original, you can see this screening, or dot pattern. The fake, on the other hand, while screened, is at a much higher resolution, so the dots are so small they are almost invisible, and the original dot pattern is gone, having been descreened.

If all else fails, if the sleeve is immaculate, too perfect for any original picture sleeve from 1972, then its the fake ;-).

The second fake issue I don't yet have so I can't get into the details of discerning it from the original. I suspect that the one I have (which was advertised as "re-print") is a botched first printing of the second fake. Once I have both, I'll report on that if I can. The clue will be the mis-placed "CB 181" or else the screen pattern.

The disc is much easier to discern between fake and original. The original Charisma vinyl singles all were printed on vinyl discs with ribs along the edge of the label, like little teeth running the full circumference between the label and the vinyl dead wax. This is extremely hard to reproduce in any cost-effective manner today, and as such any pirated disc of the old Charisma issues will not have those teeth.

Failng this, the fake has "CB 181" hand etched into the dead wax, whereas the original had it machine stamped.

Original Issue Fake Issue

To many a collector, a pirate is an interesting collectable (although typically worth far less than the official release,) and a few have been clearly sold as "re-print." But some of these are being sold in such a way as to gloss over or otherwise distract from the fact that they are not the original item. For now, I'm going to refrain from publishing usernames here to avoid any issues, but just keep in mind: if you are planning to purchase on eBay, and its not clear in the item description, always ask the seller what you need to know. Keep the e-mails until you receive your item and are satisfied. Ebay is very good regarding its "safe harbor" policy and you stand a good chance of getting at least some of your losses mitigated if you have some basis for your claim. If you know what you are buying, and the user is clear about it, the sale should be a smooth one. Ask first!

Well, that's enough news for one issue! When I receive the second item, I'll try to get an update posted here. If by then more of these surface, I'll certainly report on it, but so far, there have been few new listings on eBay, and I suspect we'll not see them re-surface again for a little while..