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This Year's Model

Original British album cover
Studio album by Elvis Costello and The Attractions
Released March 17, 1978 (1978-03-17)
Recorded Eden Studios, London, 1977 (1977)–1978 (1978)
Genre Rock, Punk rock, New Wave
Length 35:44
Label Radar
Producer Nick Lowe
Professional reviews
Elvis Costello and The Attractions chronology
My Aim Is True
This Year's Model
Armed Forces
Singles from This Year's Model
  1. "Pump It Up"
    Released: 1978 (1978)
  2. "Radio Radio"
    Released: 1978 (1978)

This Year's Model was Elvis Costello's second album and his first with The Attractions, released in 1978 (see 1978 in music). It was recorded mainly at Eden Studios in West London.

It was voted the best album of the year in The Village Voice Pazz & Jop critics poll.[1] In 2000, Q magazine placed This Year's Model at number 82 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever. In 1987, Rolling Stone magazine ranked it number 11 on its list of the best albums of the period 1967-1987. In 2003, the album was ranked number 98 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.[2] It received a rare 10.0 from Pitchfork Media.


Packaging and Artwork

Early issues of the album have an apparently misprinted sleeve, which cuts off the left side of the front cover (including the letters 'E' from 'Elvis' and 'T' from 'This') and shows a printers' color bar along the right side (see cover right). This was a deliberate mistake (a favourite technique of cover designer Barney Bubbles), as was pressing "Special pressing No. 003. Ring 434 32 32. Ask for Moira for your prize" between the holding spirals on Side A.

Early issues of the LP came with a free 7": Side A 'Stranger In The House', Side B 'Neat Neat Neat', housed in a Radar house sleeve. This promotion also included a black and white sticker stuck on the LP shrinkwrap that said 'Free Album With This Single'.

The US version was a different photo from the same session and didn't feature the deliberate mis-cropping. The original American pressing on Columbia also says "Costello" instead of "Columbia" on the inner label.

Original LP track listing

All songs written by Elvis Costello.

Side one

  1. "No Action" – 1:58
  2. "This Year's Girl" – 3:17
  3. "The Beat" – 3:45
  4. "Pump It Up" – 3:14
  5. "Little Triggers" – 2:40
  6. "You Belong to Me" – 2:22

Side two

  1. "Hand in Hand" – 2:33
  2. "(I Don't Want to Go to) Chelsea" – 3:07
  3. "Lip Service" – 2:36
  4. "Living in Paradise" – 3:52
  5. "Lipstick Vogue" – 3:29
  6. "Night Rally" – 2:41
  • The US release on Columbia, two months after the original UK release, dropped "(I Don't Want to Go to) Chelsea" and "Night Rally" (reportedly as being "too English") and added "Radio Radio" to close side two.

Bonus Tracks (1993 Rykodisc CD)

  1. "Radio Radio" – 3:05
  2. "Big Tears" – 3:09
  3. "Crawling to the USA" – 2:53
  4. "Running Out of Angels" – 2:02
  5. "Green Shirt" – 2:20
  6. "Big Boys" – 3:00
  • Tracklisting notes: The Rykodisc reissue placed "Radio Radio" after a 10-second silence following "Night Rally."

Bonus Disc (2002 Rhino CD)

  1. "Big Tears" – 3:12
  2. "Crawling to the USA" – 2:55
  3. "Running Out of Angels" (Demo version) – 2:05
  4. "Greenshirt" (Demo version) – 2:22
  5. "Big Boys" (Demo version) – 3:00
  6. "You Belong to Me" (Capital Radio version) – 1:55
  7. "Radio Radio" (Capital Radio version) – 3:01
  8. "Neat Neat Neat" (Brian James) (Live) – 3:16
  9. "Roadette Song" (Ian Dury, Russell Hardy) (Live) – 5:40
  10. "This Year's Girl" (Alternate Eden Studios version) – 2:09
  11. "(I Don't Want to Go to) Chelsea" (Basing Street Studios version) – 3:00
  12. "Stranger in the House" (BBC version) – 4:15

Note: The Rykodisc version has the original tracks and bonus tracks on one CD. The Rhino version has two CDs with the original tracks on the first CD.




Year Chart Peak Position
1978 Billboard Pop Albums (U.S.) 30

Release history (selected)

Region Date Label Format Catalog
UK March 17, 1978 (1978-03-17) Radar Records LP RAD 3
U.S. May 1978 (1978-05) Columbia Records LP 35331
UK 1981 (1981) F-Beat Records LP XXLP 4
UK January 1986 (1986-01) Demon Records CD IMP FIEND CD 18
U.S. January 1986 (1986-01) Columbia Records CD CK 35331
UK October 18, 1993 (1993-10-18) Demon Records CD DPAM2
U.S. October 19, 1993 (1993-10-19) Rykodisc CD RCD 10272
Worldwide February 19, 2002 (2002-02-19) Rhino 2 CD R2 78354
Worldwide September 10, 2007 (2007-09-10) Hip-O CD B0008638-02
Worldwide March 4, 2008 (2008-03-04) Hip-O 2 CD 'Deluxe Edition' B0010681-02


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