Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Top Ten Worst Album Covers of 2011, 2012

11.22.12 Update: Go over to the terminally cool http://houseofgeekery.com/ and check out their "Coolest Covers from my Vinyl Collection" post. Combined, these two posts make beautiful music together. HA! Did you see that?
I'll probably catch some grief over this, because some of these are great bands.  Some are bands I listen to on a regular basis.  Some are bands who's covers I noticed while looking through AllMusic or Last.fm.

But here they are, nonetheless, the top ten worst album covers thus far.  All of these albums are music I listen to with the exception of two.  So for the most part, it's no knock on them...it's a knock on their album artwork.

10.
Rush is one of my all time favorite bands.  In high school, us geeks listened to them. Neil Peart is, was and will forever be my favorite drummer. They are innovators, far ahead of their time. Their music holds up against the test of time - Permanent Waves will forever be a prog masterpiece.

Their album covers have always been so freaking cool.

Perhaps in reflection of their musiceven their singles and interiors have had amazingly stunning, innovative, thoughtful incredible artwork.  Yes, I had to be extra wordy to pack in all the awesomeness.  To quote Jack Black, "Rush is just one of those bands that has a deep reservoir of rocket sauce". He ain't wrong.

I remember my friends and I would go get their newest album and examine all the little hidden things they would pack into the covers.  Then listen to their music and hear all the cool puns and metaphors referenced on the front cover.  That's what album covers were, and are, supposed to be all about.

And they've got plenty of albums...they are one of the greatest bands of all time. I'm even taking into account they're Canadian.

Then they gave us their newest album, which is none of that other, you know, good stuff.

Entitled "Clockwork Angels" so...yep, there's some clouds, but they're red...so what kind of heaven or angels are we talking about? Wow, that's mystical.  Yep, there's a clock as well.  But this is no ordinary clock. This is a clock with strange beveled and embossed symbols...what does time represent? Oh my God! What time is it? Obviously it's almost quarter after pitchfork.  What will happen when it's quarter past pitchfork?

We will never know.
Rush - Clockwork Angels

9.

Here's Haste The Day's newest album cover for their greatest hits.  I'm guessing they had to put together some kind of greatest hits album to satisfy their label...or they simply found themselves in a slump.  I'm gonna go with the latter because if this cover is any indication they weren't feeling very creative.

So they have the Photoshop grunged out background behind some bird crest type thing.  Unable to think of anything that'll make people think...they just relied on the "mysteries" surrounding the US dollar bill.

"Here...throw some stuff in it's claws.  But make sure they aren't the same things that are on the dollar...we have to make them think about it...and stuff".

I honestly can't see this album cover because it's so boring.  It doesn't make me think.  It makes me want to go to sleep.

Haste The Day - Best Of The Best
8.
Scale The Summit is an absolutely incredible instrumental band.  Their music is incredible.  That's twice I said incredible.  And that's because they're incredible.

They are at the forefront of Progressive Metal and one of the best bands delivering a fresh, soaring sound that I can't really characterize other than the standard terms used to describe Prog Metal: technical, guitar-oriented, augmented with innovative compositions and extremely complex arrangements.  You just have to listen to them.

 Maybe that's what they wanted to get across in this album cover: complexity. But I don't mean to sound arrogant when I say that Prog Metal fans are smarter than that.  As are most people that have used Photoshop to make their Deviant Art wallpapers.

Can you tell me what this means?  Other than the fact that their band name is lost in the cliche spiral thing behind it.

I usually like oranges and browns when making an abstract piece...but these boring browns and oranges.

It's just...well...pointless.

Scale The Summit - The Collective
7.
Now we're starting to get to the good stuff. LOL SEE WHAT I DID THERE?!?

This is a band called Django Django and the cover to their album called...wait for it....Django Django. Mind=blown.

I have to try real hard to describe this one because this is pretty bad.  No...this is really bad.  Who made this?  Honestly, it looks like a freshman from an online agricultural community college had to take a graphics design course and, since he had a stolen copy of Photoshop at home he figured he'd be OK.  So while Django Django was on tour in this kid's town, they saw it hanging in one of the local coffee shops and said, "That is our album cover! It's GORGEOUS!"

Desert? Check.  Obscure shape? Check. Plausible deniability when asked what they hell it represents? Check.  "We leave it up to the viewer man...this is art".

No. Django Django.  This is shit.

Django Django - Django Django
6.
YES!  I'm in 1988 and I just beat Legend Of Zelda and found the Seal of The 15 Sun Diamonds!

Your Demise The Golden Age
5.
The Beastie Boys have been resting on their Ill Communication laurels for about 75 years now.  Their newest album, which is crap, is represented by crap on the cover.  Such a shame, too because Licensed To Ill is one of the best all time covers.

Ill Communication is a great album...but everyone needs to admit that, when listening to it in private, you skip over the instrumental songs...because they ARE ALL THE SAME!

"Dude, screw it...just put some 8 bit colors together in some shape.  We say it's art, that means we don't have to explain anything.  I mean, the album sucks anyway...so what does it matter?"

You are correct Beastie Boys.  Your Hot Sauce Committee Part Two sucks and so does its album cover.

Beastie Boys - Hot Sauce Committee Part Two

4.
I don't really know what to say about this.  As you can plainly see, there's an ethos in the music industry to just put a bunch of crap together and call it an album cover.  Album covers used to mean something man!  They used to relate, in some way, to the album's general feel or story.

Now, they are this:

"Hey, we're a death metal band.  So, like, put something dead on the cover".

What is the bird carcass breathing?  Death Breath?  Take note that the valley in which this undead bird is operating is very much vibrant and alive.  So what is it doing?  Spreading more death across the very alive valley in which it's sprung back to it's undead state?  I mean, there's working power lines. Beautiful evergreens covered with a pristine dusting of fresh, clean snow.  Granted, the sun is blacked out by something...but it the undead bird's breath is strong enough to kill the actual sun.  If so, why didn't it affect the snow and trees?  Is the undead breathing bird trying to spread its death onto those trees?  If so, it's failing.  Perhaps that's why some other birds are making their way onto the scene.  They see that their leader has picked a failure.

And if you're going to spread undead bird death to a nearby community (I'm making the assumption of a nearby community because of the power-lines) wouldn't you first cut off their communications before calling in your other undead birds and killing the sun?

None of this makes sense. And it's ugly.

Katatonia - Dead End Kings
3.
War is bad....mmmmkay?

The three makings of a bad cover:

Free downloadable font? Check.
Simple Photoshop drop shadow? Check
Bevel and Emboss? Check.


Lamb Of God - Resolution
2. 
This is art.
Pure art in the sense that, as I've mentioned they (whoever the hell Simone White is) have plausible deniability.

"Just put a bunch of shit on the cover, especially a naked woman because that's never been done before.  Hide her face because nudity is really, really taboo here in the 1400s.  Also, put...uhm...put a big slice of cake on the beach. No, a Mexican. Yeah.  Also, I heard back in art school that there should be three things in an image because it, like...does something to the viewer's eye or something.  So, in front of the cake, I mean Mexican, put a girl laying down.  We don't have to explain what it means. This is art".

If this album is any indication of whatever shit they put on this record as music I would rather get my leg caught in a bear trap and be required to saw it off with my cell phone then listen to this...I don't care if they're the second coming of Pink Fucking Floyd.

I'm not listening to this.

This band can go straight to hell.


Simone White
1.
This...this...this asshole is apparently named Ilyas Ahmed and his stupid record is called With Endless Fire.

Holy shit how original!  With Endless Fire!  See how it's coming out of his head!?  He has an endless amount of "fire" coming out of his head.

I believe, truly, that he commissioned a blind child to make this album cover.  Ever see those puzzles that you have to put together to make a square or a bird or a boat?  This asshole gave some poor blind child a bunch of pictures and said, "Just spread them around. You stupid blind child...I have art to make".

Happy with the results they slapped it into pressing and recorded an album with this as it's representation.

This album cover fills me with rage.

Asshole.
Ilyas Asshole - With Endless Asshole

Honorable Mention:
Jack White is really, really emotional and filed with money...I mean pain.

This album cover proves it.  His sister/bed-partner has left him.  His only friend is a big buzzard.

Look how downtrodden he is.  No one will hang out with him other than buzzards. He hangs out near transformer clusters because...well, just because.

Plus, having a buzzard as your wingman (see what I did there) makes you even more emotional.

He can't escape it...it's circular, this emotional turmoil of his.

Jack White and whatever shit he made now.

1 comment:

  1. good job man so funny lol hahahaha keep doing some sht like this because those album covers are terrible

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to contribute. Blogs don't exist without an active community.