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Record Cover Art

We don't like to admit it but the cover artwork on a record may well influence us to lay down the payment even before hearing all or even any tracks from an album. I suppose you could say the same with many products we would buy say a bottle of whisky? does the label attract our eye to a certain brand?

Any way before I head off into a world of advertising and marketing my point is that the time spent on a cover probably does compare with the importance to it's musical ingredients. Though there will always be those that point out "The White Album" by The Beatles. 

In my mind there is no doubt that Record Covers are a form of art and I intend to occasionally add them as feel to the list that will appear below. They will have no criteria attached other than I or someone else suggests them. If I can add any story or factual update I will certainly try.

Diamond Dogs by David Bowie as suggested by Clive Ennis. The Year is 1974 and Bowie has gone through several changes since emerging from the sixties. He was glancing forwards into a dystopian vision through his cracked Orwellian glasses and the artwork on this album certainly captures the feeling of strange years ahead.

 The artwork was done by Guy Peellaert who had already worked with David on a cover for a book in 1973 and thus again David commissioned him for the soon to be Diamond Dogs LP. Bowie also knew that a certain friend of his was also pursuing Peellaert for an album cover, Bowie beat Jagger to the release date but The Stones had Guy produce artwork for It's Only Rock 'n Roll soon after.

Bowie had the idea of the half dog half human concept and started with a cut up photo composition which is fairly close to the end result, the half dog is believed to be a Whippet. This then progressed to the Belgian artist perfecting the look on canvas with a Circus Freak Show styling captured for eternity.

On release as Clive Ennis has mentioned there was a little too much detail in the genital area for the execs at RCA to allow. This was quickly airbrushed away though some apparently escaped.

bathing caps.jpg

The debut album by Blur with it's iconic front cover was an adapted and cropped photo by photographer Charles Hewitt from 1954 of swimmers in bathing caps.

The 1954 shot is less coloured and of a larger area, the more subtle colouring does look better in original but may not have suited the agenda in 1991.


"The Impossible Dream - the Story of the 1967 Boston Red Sox"

Great piece of art though no detail of the artist on the front or back. On investigating online may well have been designed by Dick Hamilton which could be a pseudonym for another artist "Dick Briefer" a comic book artist, all unconfirmed. There others in this series of Baseball related records and all have similar great covers.

This album is "Moon Shot" as performed by The Rank Concert Orchestra - conducted by Ed Welch on the United Artists Label.

All we have here is the notes that tell us that the sleeve was illustrated by Chris Moore. Unless I am wrong the same artist contributed to other albums in the seventies and has made a career illustrating Sci Fi Books and producing fantasy art.

 The music is a similar effort and maybe an influence on Public Service Broadcasting's "The race For Space"

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