The Afghan Whigs


Black Love

Sub Pop SP353 LP, released 1996 (U.S.)
Elektra 61896-2 CD / 61896-4 Cassette, released 1996 (U.S.)
Elektra 7559-61896-1 LP / 7559-61896-2 CD / 7559-61896-4 Cassette, released 1996 (Europe)
Mute STUMM143 LP / CD STUMM 143 / CSTUMM143 Cassette, released 1996 (UK)
Elektra 7559-61896-2 CD, released 1996 (Australia)
Elektra CD 61896, released 1996 (Canada)
Elektra WPCR-672 CD, released 1996 (Japan)
Elektra 61896-4 Cassette, released 1996 (Indonesia)
Music on Vinyl MOVLP821 LP, released 2014 (Germany)
Elektra/Rhino R1 557151 3xLP / R2 557151 2xCD, released 2016 (U.S.)
Elektra 081227942892 3xLP / 081227942908 2xCD, released 2016 (Germany)
Mute XLSTUMM143 3xLP / LCDSTUMM143 2xCD, released 2016 (UK)

This is one of the best albums ever recorded. I cannot be swayed from this opinion. Released in 1996, Sub Pop had the U.S. rights to the original vinyl release; it was released as SP353 on black vinyl. The UK version was on Mute Records (STUMM143-1), also on black vinyl. There was also a German release on Elektra Records. As with Gentlemen, the German version seems to be the rarest. In 2014, Music on Vinyl released a 180g re-press, which is pretty easy to find.

In 2016, Black Love was re-pressed as a giant 3 LP set, complete with previously unreleased demos and rough takes. Very interesting to hear after all of these years (particularly the bones of "Crime Scene Part Two", which many of us had wondered about for years). The sleeves for the re-presses were modified slightly. On the U.S. and German ones, all the graphics and lettering were colored gold. On the UK one, the entire sleeve was gold colored, with the graphics faded (ha) into the background and black lettering. All of the re-presses can be found readily.

Now...pricing. This is a mess. The price for the U.S. and UK originals fluctuated wildly for a number of years. The average price for the U.S. one came down after the 2016 re-pressing was released, but it was still going for a fair amount. That is, of course, until someone flooded the market with sealed U.S. originals, starting in 2018. As a result, the price came way down, and only started really rising again in 2021. The spread for the original UK version in 2017 was insane: it went for anywhere from $15 to $90. No idea. It is occasionally sold for a high price, but is usually pretty affordable these days.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
Sub Pop SP353 45-65 3 Up
Elektra 7559-61896-1 30-50 5 Stable
Mute STUMM143-1 30-45 4 Stable
Music on Vinyl MOVLP821 20-30 1 Stable
Rhino/Elektra R1 557151 3xLP (U.S.) 25-40 1 Stable
Elektra 081227942892 3xLP (Germany) 30-40 1 Stable
Mute XLSTUMM143 3xLP (UK) 25-35 2 Stable
Sub Pop
Music on Vinyl
Rhino/Elektra Re-press
Mute Re-press
Credits:  Mike: SP353 image

This page was last updated on February 1, 2022.

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Scarcity Score Definition
10 Near impossible: Fewer than 50 copies or publicly sold every few years
8-9 Very rare: 50-199 copies or publicly sold 1-2 times per year
6-7 Rare: 200-499 copies or publicly sold a few times a year
4-5 Medium: 500-999 copies or publicly sold ~10 times a year
1-3 Common: 1000+ copies, readily available, or publicly sold 20+ times a year

Estimated values are based on recent auction results or online sales.