In August 1973 EMI decided to overhaul their tape inlay template style, driven by a number of factors. Firstly, the introduction of Dolby Noise Reduction (Type B), secondly the desire to make the EMI branding more prominent and also to do this using a new circular logo designed for use on the new 'EMI Records' label. This was the tan and red one introduced in mid-1973 for records that would previously have been released on the Parlophone and Columbia brand names. This is because CBS in America asserted the right to have exclusive use of the 'Columbia' name, for which EMI's rights were set to expire in 1974.
The gold colour previously used all over was retained (except for Classical releases), but was now truncated to a strip across the top. This extended all the way along the front of the inlay, including the backflip and inside cover. The circular EMI logo was shown on the front and the label under which the record was released has its logo shown at the bottom of the backflip. In the main, the cassette label would include this logo in exactly the same format.
The full DOLBY SYSTEM logo was added to the front and on the tape label, and the symbol alone was added to the spine.
Printers' date codes and 0C numbers continued to be included as with the previous layout.
Early cassettes in this layout included the circular EMI logo on the spine aswell - however sometime in May 1974 this was removed, when it was realised that other logo configurations would be needed when manufacturing tapes for third-party customers.
Labels were plain white instead of yellow from this point, and black cassette shells became more common, although light grey ones did continue to appear from time-to-time.
Early "pressings", like this Wizzard example, used the earlier shiny ink for the gold stripe, which rubbed off over time. Subsequent print runs used light-brown print instead.
An example of the vanilla 'EMI' Records label introduced in 1973 to supersede the Columbia label that was withdrawn and soak up releases that would have previously been attributed to Parlophone. The former was a legal issue (the 'Columbia' name also being used by CBS in America), and the latter was purely a marketing decision to 'tidy up' EMI's suite of labels.
The 1970s saw an explosion of new record labels set up by bands and producers who weren't content with their records appearing on an established one.
Deep Purple had started out on Parlophone, then were moved to Harvest in 1969, then ended up forming 'Purple Records' in 1973.
Hence the number of different logos on the backflip started to increase considerably!
Cassette inlays were minimal of course compared to the vinyl sleeves, meaning such luxuries as additional artwork or song lyrics were usually not available to the cassette purchaser.
On rare occasions however, the artist could twist EMI's arm and allow a special dispensation. Ex-Beatle George Harrison did this twice in the mid 70s.
Firstly, for his album "Dark Horse" (right) in 1974, because George was keen to ensure everybody could see and read the words aswell as listen to them (trying to get across religious messages and not just musical entertainment), he persuaded EMI to include a lyrics booklet inside cassette and 8-track issues of the album.
Click on the image (right) to see the full inlay, lyrics booklet and cassette.
A year later George bucked the design trend yet again, by getting this all-over orange design for "Extra Texture" past the corporate design review board.
Even the gold stripe didn't survive this one, with only a white line indicating where this would have been - at least ensuring the title information would line up with other EMI tapes of the period.