BEST EXPERIMENTAL ALBUM COVERS

by Ryan Blackwell | 13.04.19

In celebration of Record Store Day 2019, we are showcasing our favourite album covers which take elements of experimental image making. The power of a record sleeve is being able to visually represent the artist's sound and provide more context for the music within the record sleeve.

1. Bjork Vulnicura

What is it that makes record artwork great? We believe it is the power to represent the music visually, it is also a chance to take the artists ideas and project them through a visual medium incorporating elements of graphic design, photography, CGI and so on. A necessary factor when creating record artwork is that is is interesting in a range of sizes and displays; much like the artists music which has to be perfect for live performance as well as through headphones, the imagery used in artwork needs to be as impactful at billboard size as well as in a thumbnail or Instagram post. 

2. Placebo Meds

The best album artworks tell a story, or convey a statement which aligns with the belief of the artist, from M.I.As digitally retouched duotone portrait reflective of the heavily digital aspect of her work, to Bjork's distortion of the body which she often replicates in her iconic fashion moments, to Anohni's merged face portraits reflective of her transgender identity.

3. The Knife Shaking the Habitual

The way an artist represents their music has always been something that intrigues us at Beyond Photography. Like a lot of people, we turn to music videos, photoshoots, and album covers to uncover more information and detail to the themes the artist creates that we may not have fully pieced together from the music. 

4. Biffy Clyro Only Revolutions

Records have always been very important culturally to people of all ages, not only did records make music accessible and for people to create individual collections, but a record collection became a way to reflect your personal identity through ones collection. Owning a record of music you love is almost a badge of pride with most people proudly displaying their records in their living room or bedroom. 

5. M.I.A Matangi

We saw records leave in replacement of Tapes, CDs and iPods, and in the past decade, we have seen the record return with veracity as people begin to build up their collections of their favourite music collecting everything from new releases to limited editions from charity shops and record stores which have reappeared with abundance. 

6. Anohni Hopelessness

Using Format