Bootlegs of rare KLF releases have been released aplenty over the time. While some of them can be easily spotted, others are hard to distinguish from the original issues.
The White Room Original Motion Picture Soundtrack has never been officially released due to Bill and Jimmy cancelling it when Kylie Said To Jason failed to chart at higher places, so basically, every copy you will find of this is a bootleg. What follows is a list of the most notable versions you can find (depending on how lucky you are.)
1991 Cassette Bootleg
The earliest version known so far, released back in 1991 including a couple of bonus tracks including an 8-minute demo of 3 a.m. Eternal (Live At The S.S.L.).
1997 CD Release
In 1997, list members released a bootleg of the soundtrack that was apparently taken from a stolen mastertape.
Along the original ten tracks of the OST, they also added some rarer KLF tracks and mixes, most notable the ‘monster attack mix’ of What Time Is Love?. While those bonus tracks were mastered from CD or vinyl which lead to a quite decent sound, the tracks taken from the mastertape sound quite muffled and got several stereo flaws in them. The sleeve features a quite interesting story about The White Room movie, though.
Several years later, the owner of the original tape had it re-recorded in a professional studio, using the EQ settings from Kylie Said To Jason (the only track that had been released on CD). The sound quality of these is very good, especially if you were used to the 1997 bootleg’s sound.
This version was also temporarily hosted on the old KLF Online website around the time of release so you should have no problem finding a version of it online.
Arkive Volume 4
The White Room Soundtrack also got released as part of the Arkive series, including yet another set of bonus tracks.
The exact release date is unknown.
2016 Cubefish LP
In 2016 a very limited run of the soundtrack got released on white vinyl in a limited run of 130 copies, being sourced from yet another DAT tape. The sleeve replicates those from the Pure Trance series in its layout but is plain white with glossy lettering. Once again sound quality is superior to that of previous bootlegs, making this the best sounding version to date.
Another 60 copies were made available on CD, housed in a faux KLF Communications company cardboard sleeve which read 12CM instead of 12INCH.
Due to the CD release being highly available (at least the US pressings), only the vinyl has been bootlegged so far, though multiple times. It seems that only the original JAMS LP5 has the copyright notice printed in the outer circle of the label as well as the KLF Communications logo on the right. Furthermore, the label of the first bootleg has the same spelling mistake as the ‘1987’ bootleg from the Netherlands.
The original has 3 tracks and is labelled KLF ETERNA 1.
The alleged Italian one-sided bootleg has only one track and is labelled ETERNITY 23. It comes without a sleeve but with a “bumper”-style sticker that reads: “KLF / MADRUGADA ETERNA (CLUB MIX) / EDIZIONE SPECIALE / NUMERO (blank space)/500”. According to Erik Gander the bootleg features the same mix as ETERNA 1.
Note that neither feature the mix from the White Room promo video.
The original 7″ vinyl is one-sided and the catalogue number is KLF5TOTP. The bootleg is double sided (the same track on both sides) and the catalogue number is KLF 3AM1. It is rumoured that these originated when one member of Extreme Noise Terror heard it was not going to be commercially released and had a few printed up on the side, very allegedly.
Since its initial appearance on eBay (selling for $1.325!), ‘Love Trance’ has led to numerous discussions on the KLF mailing list. Reportedly Bill and Jimmy called the pressing plant asking them not to press ‘Love Trance’ but they had already begun, hence the few copies pressed with labels and sleeves in existence.
There are various details that points towards it being taken from an original run of pressings supporting these reports. In the run-out groove you can still see the name of Adrenaline, scratched-out by someone. Adrenaline was one of the pressing plants that usually manufactured the KLF’s records, and while today’s vinyls usually come with printed run-out grooves, ‘Love Trance’ has hand-written information.
Apart from these accidental original pressings a large batch of bootlegs surfaced in the early 2000’s, though most of them without proper labels.
The track itself features some vocal samples that were used on ‘Space’ as well (“Penetration: seven minutes…”).
The sound quality is rather clear. We can’t compare the sound of ‘Love Trance’ to any other release, but the b-side (‘What Time Is Love? (monster attack mix)’) sounds slightly better than on the ‘White Room OST’ bootleg which is the only other place where you can find it.
One might argue that ‘Love Trance’ does not really sound like any other KLF record, nor do parts of it resurface on later tracks. One of the japanese vocal samples says, “The KLF has now left the building” – which would then have been two years before the first promo appearance of ‘3 a.m. Eternal’. Even IF the JAMS ever had a master plan, it is quite unlikely that they had already planned all this in 1988.
At this point the common consensus is that ‘Love Trance’ is indeed an unreleased KLF track, a theory which is supported by a tweet by Jimmy, as well as another track salvaged from a couple of DATs Jimmy had thrown away, displaying some similiarities to the ‘original’ version. This is most probably the most obscure KLF release around, so if you ever see a copy, don’t hestitate to pick it up.
With only 1000 copies in existence KLF 008R is among the more sought after releases so naturally bootlegs exist, but thankfully the differences are right on the outer sleeve.
While the original is pink the bootleg is a lot darker in colour. The font and typeset varies between both – whereas the original uses the KLF’s standard font the bootleg uses a look-alike font (Compacta?) which results in differences in the overlapping of the “5” and “Trancentral” as well as a much more rounded “5” on the bootleg.
Though not as obvious as on the front the back cover features similar differences in font and typeset as well. Furthermore the bootlegs omits the barcode in the upper right corner.
Thanks to Maarten Bouwes for providing pictures for comparison.
Bootleg. This was never released by KLF Communications but appears on ‘Wix Trax! Records’. The sleeve is an amalgamation of Chill Out and Space sleeves, and the CD itself plays Chill Out as individual tracks, but cuts of the end of ‘The Lights of Baton Rouge Pass By’ to break into a single track of Space. CD Cat no. is ODY 026 KLF 1
Bootleg. There was never an official KLF release of this compilation. URT are a well-known series of bootlegs, there is also an Orb one amongst countless others.
The Lost Sounds of Mu series is an effort to make available to fans of Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty those tracks which have either fallen out of circulation, or are difficult to acquire in their original state. The discs are created and assembled by fans, for fans, and with a desire for the preservation of these Great Men’s contribution to popular culture. These are ‘Fan Club’ discs.