17 Dec Album Covers of the Year 2014 Interviews
Psychology-Inspired Album Covers
Bleeding Rainbow – Interrupt (Kanine Records)
Sarah Everton (Bleeding Rainbow):
With both Interrupt and our previous album, Yeah Right, I was thinking a lot about black holes as a metaphor and used that concept in the artwork. Specifically, I was thinking about the mind as a black hole where thoughts, obligations, and memories become distorted and overwhelming. Also on my mind was the concept of negative capability which is this philosophical idea about human beings viewing limitations placed on them as changeable. Therefore, I see the cover of Interrupt as being a beautiful repurposing of stressful and stifling circumstances.
As far as the aesthetic goes, I wanted to combine punk flyer Xerox (the hands are photocopied) with abstract mid-century modern art vibe and extreme simplicity — right to the point, like the album’s songs. (Abstract mid-century modern art meaning specifically work by Robert Rauschenberg, Cy Twombly, and this one painting called “Rolling” by Adolph Gottlieb.)
The hands are there to represent anybody — women or men — because I didn’t want to use a typical repurposed sexy ’60s girl cut out from an old magazine for instance. The hands are out like they are trying to stop from being sucked into the black holes; but also, they’re making trails like you’re tripping on LSD.
Grayson Gilmour – Infinite Life! (Flying Nun Records)
Artwork by Henrietta Harris
Sounds by Grayson Gilmour
Gem Club – In Roses (Hardly Art)
Christopher Barnes (Gem Club):
I found Yinling Hsu’s paintings online. I was instantly drawn to them. This painting is from her series, longevity club. Since she lives in Taipei, I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to even get in touch with her, let alone use the painting for the cover of the record, so I kept searching for alternatives. All throughout the recording process, I kept coming back to this painting. I became obsessed. I was very excited when she agreed to lend her art to the album cover.
I recorded this album to tape at an analogue studio. I think, in part, it was appropriate to look for an artist that worked in traditional media — that whatever was on the cover have a more tactile quality to it. Many of the songs on this record deal with detachment, loss, and uncertainty. Her painting embodies this atmosphere. At first it looks a bit ordinary, until you spend some time with it. Slowly, everything is a bit off — the space, the content, the characters. I love this. Everything feels disjointed and somewhat alienated from its surroundings.
Honduras – Break EP (Black Bell Records)
Magic Fades – Push Thru (1080p)
Artwork by Jan Gieseking
Sounds by Magic Fades
– Mike Grabarek, Magic Fades
I got the album in advance and listened to it quite a lot. Mike and Jeremy had a pretty clear vision to stay true to the title, and we took it from there. The work process was great and rapid which I really enjoyed; using social media to emerge in conversation it was a very fluent process…People write me that they really like the cover and that it reminds them of a lot of different popular culture/media examples that I really never had in mind or didn’t even know.
We knew that we wanted something clean and computer-rendered because we thought it would complement the production. The concept was just of this person pushing through a plane/grid…. You can see in the image that the main figure actually has their hand on another figure’s head, using it to push off… [it] is kinda supposed to represent the fact that in order to get somewhere, sometimes people will resort to using somebody else to achieve their goals. Kinda dark, I know.
Monokino – Fake Virtue (Modern Sky / Zip Records)
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart – Days of Ambition (Yebo Music)
Artwork by Jinju Lee
Design & Layout by Brian Arnold
Sounds by The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
The Skygreen Leopards – Family Crimes (Woodsist Records)
Artwork by Glenn Donaldson of The Skygreen Leopards
Sounds by The Skygreen Leopards
Triathalon – Lo-Tide (Broken Circles Records)
Adam Intrator (Triathalon):
This album cover is reminiscent of our first EP, Relationships, that we released in 2011, which is a guy laying face first in ocean water. It happens to be a close friend of ours who is in that photo. I thought it was fitting stylistically for our first release and our latest release to have a similar feel. It just seemed like a very natural and fitting progression…
The photo was taken by a close friend, Lucy Prouty. I actually saw it a few years back, and right away, knew I would forever use it as an album cover. I’m really thankful she let us use it for the album. The photo has so much meaning and creates such an interesting aesthetic.