The famous Cover Art from the Elephant Stone single
“Elephant Stone” is a song by the English rock band the Stone Roses. It was the third single released by the group and their first release on Silvertone Records. Originally released in October 1988, it showcases the group’s growing confidence and incorporation of dance rhythms. The song was written by singer Ian Brown and guitarist John Squire.
The single was produced by New Order bassist Peter Hook in his own studio. It was initially scheduled for release on Rough Trade Records and remixed by John Leckie following a deal with Silvertone Records.
“Elephant Stone” was released in two alternate versions; the original ran for nearly five minutes and featured an extended drum intro and more prominent bass playing, while the later, shorter cut ran for three minutes and included layers of wah-wah guitar. On its original release it failed to make the chart, but reached #8 on re-release in March 1990.
The B-side “Full Fathom Five” (named after a Jackson Pollock painting) is essentially an alternate single mix of “Elephant Stone” played in reverse.
John Squire on the hidden meaning of “Elephant Stone”, “What is about? Love and Death… War and Peace… Morecambe and Wise…” Squire also said about “Elephant Stone”, “It’s about a girl… who I don’t see any more…”
Although released as a non-album single, the track did appear on the US release of the band’s debut album The Stone Roses and also on some post 1989 reissued UK editions of the album. It has also appeared on the compilation albums Turns into Stone, The Complete Stone Roses and The Very Best of The Stone Roses.