First Pressings vs. Reissues
In January, 1984, EMI released The Single File, a limited collection of Kate's UK singles released to date, packaged with a 16 page photo/lyric booklet in a custom, cardboard box. In addition to the 12 singles released up to that point, it also contained Ne T'enfuis Pas -- the only place you'll find a UK pressing of this single to this day.
Early Kate singles were highly collectible and becoming increasingly scarce by the time The Single File was released, so a number of dealers simply sold the contents of the box set as 13 separate singles. Some of these reissues are easily distinguishable from their original counterparts, while others are not.
Some first pressings have messages etched into the dead wax (runnout section) of the vinyl. Others have different logos or altered text, or they're printed on heavier stock. Some need side by side comparisons to distinguish the originals from the reissues, but unfortunately, you never get to hold them side by side in real life -- especially when you're digging around some used record store trying to determine if the single you just found in the bargain bin is an original issue or not!
December Will Be Magic Again (shown above) is one of the easier ones to spot. First pressings of the discs are easily identifiable -- they all have "Happy Christmas" etched into the dead wax on side A.
Original sleeves are easy to distinguish as well -- IF YOU KNOW WHAT TO LOOK FOR. Take a close look at the two rear sleeves. First pressings have "Cut by Chris Blair", "Songs & arrangements by Kate Bush", and "Cover by Nick Price" centered on the rear sleeve. All reissues have these acknowledgements spread out across the bottom. They're a little difficult to see on the images above, so here are enlargements of the bottom sections of the rear sleeves:
If you have any questions or comments about the differences between the first pressings and reissues, please send me a note.