For the composition of this post I’ve enlisted my older cousin who teaches art in Indianapolis. The post was inspired by my listening to the Meat Puppets’ “Plateau” and staring in awe at their album cover for Meat Puppets II, just thinking how perfectly it went with the music.
This is sort of a problem I see in the digital era: a lack of the NEED for album covers, perhaps to go along with a certain ebb in the quality of music itself (seeing as we’re getting it for free, there might be slightly less ambition to put an ounce of soul into it, on the part of the artist)… and what’s up with that big white a$$ on that Kanye cover? Do we really need that? The ’80’s were about as gritty as a decade can get as far as the music goes, and you hear such awkward catharsis in bands like the Meat Puppets and the Violent Femmes — these guys just HAD to express themselves by any means necessary, and I think all would agree that the Femmes further corroborated the concept of the visual to go along with the audial.
Well, without further ado, here are my cousin’s answers, accompanied by a brief introduction:
Top 10 Album Covers. I love this topic so it’s no sweat. I just hope I can remember all the ones I really like without missing any. So here we go in no particular order without thinking about this real hard or doing any research . . .
Led Zepplin – Houses of the Holy
Lou Reed – Transformer
Rage Against the Machine (eponymous)
The Clash – London Calling
The Beatles – Abbey Road
Bob Dylan – Blood on the Tracks
Blur – Parklife
The Suicide Machines – Destruction By Definition
The Strokes – Room On Fire
Radiohead – Hail to the Thief
Pearl Jam – Ten
I know it’s Eleven. This was actually kind of tough to narrow down. I almost put the Blue Album by Weezer on here but my GF vehemently disagreed.
As you can see, despite his proper training in art history from the Renaissance up through the modern, he is still a lover of rock and roll and often favors shots of the band members themselves. Sure, a great cover is nothing without something convincing and juicy behind it (see Bob Dylan’s Self Portrait, maybe?), but as always art should be about empowering the artist, and emboldening the cultural statements made, and the only way to do this, as with anything, is to appeal to the senses. With our minds wrought every day by things like car horns, pollution and Donald Trump, it’s arguable that only transcendent, multimedia projects of rebellion can rightly deliver us back to that harmonious place in our minds.