5 Album Covers We Love

These come to mind, in chronological order (all images courtesy of AllMusic.com):

This Is Our Music


The classic Blue Note covers of the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s have been endlessly paid tribute by a myriad of artists mesmerized by the style and classy look of the legendary jazz label’s releases. (A new generation also took notice with the release of Graham Marsh’s coffetable book Blue Note: The Album Cover Art in the early ‘90s.) But the guys at Atlantic Records’ art department were no slouches either. This simple, direct and defiant cover—which features an integrated band, in the still heavily-segregated ‘60s—mirrors the album’s title and clearly establishes there will be no fooling around once the needle hit the grooves.

Wish You Were Here


The now legendary design firm known as Hipgnosis has created many an iconic album cover over the years, but we’ve always been mesmerized by this very ‘70s, yet timeless picture of two men shaking hands in some back lot while one of them is clearly on fire. Perhaps it symbolizes the band making a deal with the Devil of commercial glories—this album is the followup to the mega smash Dark Side of The Moon [Harvest-1973]—and formally severing its ties to founding member Syd Barrett, upon whom 80% or so of the lyrical content of the album is based. Or maybe it’s just pretty cool.

Breakfast in America


Was the band’s desire to finally conquer the US what inspired the cover of this 1979 blockbuster? Is the jolly, cherubic diner waitress standing in for the Statue of Liberty, with a Manhattan skyline made of eating utensils in the background, and seen through the eyes of an airplane passenger (an outsider?) meant to be a comment on the ruthlessness of America (chews you up, spits you out); crass commercialism; or perhaps that shiny, technicolor image British rockers have always ascribed to it? Whatever the reason, it’s still a clever bit of imagery and always a big hit with us.

This Is The Sea


A simple, understated, but very artistic black and white close up of head Waterboy Mike Scott, with a very traditional and sober white font. Excellent.



(aka Cassette or Compact Disc, depending on the format)

The generic supermarket product approach pays off big time for former Sex Pistol John Lydon and co. Interestingly, there are no album credits to be found on the record itself. (This may have been due to the departure and dismissal of the previous incarnation of the band, leading many to consider this to be Lydon's first actual solo album.) Regardless, once fans heard this Bill Laswell production—featuring the likes of Ginger Baker, Ryuichi Sakamoto and Steve Vai—they not only discovered PiL’s finest album but heard how far from generic the music on this release actually was.