Album Cover News Recap – Late October/Early November, 2013

Album Cover News Recap – Late October/Early November, 2013

Here’s a recap of the most-recent album cover art and artist-related postings on the ACHOF site – we know that you’re busy getting ready for the upcoming Holiday season, but album cover news never sleeps, so here’s a summary of the most-interesting articles and press releases we’ve found in an easy-to-read

October 17 – While I admit to being a huge fan of heavy metal music, I did really draw the line at some of the more – how do I put it delicately? – disgusting offshoots of the genre (I do like some “death metal”, but then there’s some that’s a bit overboard). However, these genres have supported an entire sub-set of album cover artists, and while the subject material may be objectionable to some, the skill involved to create some of these images is undeniable and, as the ACHOF is to there to support album cover creators regardless of their clientele and subject material, it is important to be able to share the work of some of these folks. Making it easy for me today is OC Weekly writer Alex Distefano, whose
“10 Goriest Album Covers” article (warning – not for the easily-disturbed) lists the author’s “Top 10” in the genre – take a look, if you dare (perhaps I should have saved this for my Halloween posting).

October 24 – Wow – a week away, and so much to catch up on! Since I’m Portland-based, it only seems right to note the 10-year anniversary of the death of Ellliott Smith and to point you to an article by Emma Gallegos on the LAist site (originally posted in the Hollywood Reporter) in which the photographer
Autumn de Wilde recalls her photo for the cover of Smith’s Figure 8 record, taken in front of a mural found on a wall in LA’s Silver Lake area. Smith’s early solo records were on the PDX-based Kill Rock Stars label, and the singer lived in Portland from his early teens and returned after college to work and start his musical career. More on the mural, the photo and Mr. Smith via the link –

October 25 – Events, events everywhere! Here are the details –
1) Opening in late October at the CedarHurst Center (at the Mitchell Museum – Main Gallery) in Mt. Vernon, IL – the fine rock photography show (curated by the Columbus Museum of Art in Georgia) titled “Sound and Vision: Monumental Rock ‘n’ Roll Photography, featuring the works of Danny Clinch, Joel Brodsky, Jim Marshall, Mick Rock, Pennie Smith, Jurgen Vollmer and over 20 others, on display there until December 31 –
2) At The Proud Archivist Gallery in London, album cover fans will be treated to a new exhibition of the work of the late Storm Thorgerson and Hipgnosis titled The Gathering Storm. On Sunday, the 27th of October, Storm Studios artists Peter Curzon, Dan Abbott and Rupert Truman were on hand to sign copies
of the new exhibition book. Related activities later this year include a showing of Roddy Bogawa’s Taken By Storm film and a do-it-yourself “Live Liquid Album Art” event.

October 28 – YES, Deep Purple and Peter Gabriel are among the top vote-getters so far in the voting for the upcoming class of inductees for the R&R Hall of Fame – I’m hoping that the folks who do the actual inducting take this to heart as they cast their own votes…While note quite the same in terms of importance to music fans, there was a recent article posted on Canada’s Huff Po site in which the authors posted their choices for the “Sexiest Album Covers from the 50’s to Now” and, I think you’ll agree, they presented quite the collection of classic “sexy” album cover images – both sexes are represented (everyone has their favorite eye-candy, right?), with many a memorable image for fans of
all ages. I’ll cast my votes for my own personal “Top 3” – will you do the same?
1) Pixies – Surfer Rosa
2) Ohio Players – “Honey”
3) Ween – Chocolate & Cheese
Plus, two thumbs up for the “Seal” – a classic shot –

October 29 – One of the things I’m reminded of with Lou Reed’s passing over the weekend was the impact of the Velvet Underground & Nico‘s album cover (with art by Andy Warhol) on album packaging going forward. If you’ll recall, the original pressing of the album featured a cover that included a “peelable” banana which, at the time, caused quite the stir with the censors. The intricate production process raised the bar for innovative packaging going forward, detailed today in the HuffPost Arts & Culture section, reachable via the link –
While the record wasn’t a huge seller when released, it’s importance is unmistakable.

October 30 – While I try hard not to promote articles that smack of “who is the most deserving” to be honored in any hall of fame, I did want to highlight this recent article on Esquire’s blog where they chose the “best” album covers associated with this year’s list of possible inductees into the R&R Hall of Fame.
To view their list, please visit

While, overall, I do like many of their selections, I would like to suggest some alternatives to consider for some of them:
Deep Purple – In Rock or Burn
KISS – Destroyer or Dynasty
LL Cool J – Mamma Said Knock You Out
YES – Tales From Topographic Oceans or Relayer
Any of you who’d like to add your suggestions, please do.

October 31 – Album cover art licenses will never cease to amaze me – in this latest example, the folks at Bloomingdale’s – as part of their ongoing tribute to the U.K. and The Beatles – now offer a complete selection of clothing, accessories and silk scarves (at $150 each, or $1995 for a limited edition – by
Turnbull & Asser – of 15 scarves, including the 13 original U.K. LP covers plus 2 bonus scarves with White Album promo art from Billboard Magazine). Also included in the collection are photos from Rock Paper Photo by Astrid Kirchher and Henry Grossman and a very cool Sgt. Pepper‘s umbrella by London
Undercover. Can’t wait to see these on photos in the NY Times “Style” section…

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