In Trance is the third studio album by German rock band Scorpions, released by RCA Records in 1975. The album’s music was a complete departure from the progressive krautrock of the two previous albums in favor of a hard rock sound of shorter and tighter arrangements with which the band would achieve their later global success and fame; extended suites in the vein of songs such as “Lonesome Crow” and “Fly to the Rainbow” are absent altogether. It is the first album by the band to contain the now-famous logo and controversial artwork.
The original version of the album cover, photographed by Michael von Gimbut, was censored for clearly showing the cover model’s exposed breast hanging down towards the guitar. Later releases have the breast blacked out so that it is not visible. This is the first of many Scorpions album covers that have been censored. The band’s former lead guitarist Uli Jon Roth claimed he may have come up with the “idea to do the thing with the guitar for the cover of In Trance“.
However, in a 2008 interview, Roth claimed that early Scorpions album covers, in general, were “the record company’s idea, but we certainly didn’t object. And so shame on us. Those covers were probably the most embarrassing thing I’ve ever been involved with.” He did, though, classify the In Trance cover as “borderline”.
The White Stratocaster shown on the cover belonged to Roth and he can be seen playing the same guitar on the cover of the Electric Sun album Fire Wind. This is the guitar that Roth used on all subsequent Scorpions and Electric Sun albums on which he played.
This was the band’s first album to feature the band’s name written in the now-familiar font used on nearly all subsequent album covers, as well as their first collaboration with producer Dieter Dierks.