A good record cover will stop you dead in your tracks, and make you curious not only about the music it accompanies, but about the artist who created it. Album art is often our first introduction to a band’s latest collection of songs, giving a visual aspect to the sonic creations inside the sleeve. Some acts take on the daunting task themselves, many with fantastic results, while other musicians enlist painters, photographers, crafters, and illustrators for the project. Even in this time of digital downloads, we’re not immune to the effects of a great album cover, and we find it unfortunate that the people behind these pieces rarely get the credit they deserve — so we’ve rounded-up ten that you should know, after the jump. Keep the list going by adding your suggestions in the comments.
Not only is he the drummer for experimental art-punk trio Liars, but Julian Gross also dabbles in visual arts. He studied at CalArts, along with his future bandmates, and is the mastermind behind the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ killer Show Your Bones cover, which incorporates three abstract Y’s sewn together to create a red, purple, and yellow ribcage. Along with exploring textile art, Gross has also created woodsy ink illustrations for his band’s Sisterworld album, and Photoshopped the controversial cover art for their It Fit When I Was A Kid EP. Last January, the multi-faceted artist’s work was featured at New Zealand’s Starkwhite Gallery, along with the art of fellow musicians from Les Savy Fav, the Pixies, and Devendra Banhart.