Stratovarius’ Infinite album cover displays and timely message

poster1.jpgThis week, the 2000 album by Finnish metal band Stratovarius was released as a special edition. The cover by British artist Derek Riggs features golden dolphins jumping though the symbol for infinity. One side of the album displays a pristine, crystal blue ocean. The other shows an ocean spoiled by polution, with what appears to be an oil-soaked sea bird gasping for life and dead fish floating on the surface.

It is impossible not to draw a connection to what is currently happening in the Gulf of Mexico. However, the cover was created a decade ago. The release of the 2010 special edition of the acclaimed album was in the works long before oil began spilling into the Gulf. Riggs’ album cover simply makes a stronger impression now that we’ve seen his illustration come to life.

Derek Riggs is best known for creating Iron Maiden’s mascot Eddie the Head. His personal website and online portfolio, including the full poster for Infinite (above), can be seen at derekriggs.com.

Sometimes life does imitate art. Sadly, that often is not a good thing.

Posted by: zeefritz

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Interpol reveals cover of new album

New York City rock band Interpol has revealed the cover art for their fourth studio album. The self-titled album is scheduled to be released by Matador Records on September 7, 2010.

The cover has been reported to represent the band’s logo exploding in space. It is an interesting 3D rendering. It would probably benefit from some motion blurs or something similar to punch it up a bit. Otherwise, it is somewhat of a sleeper.

Posted by: zeefritz

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New and Notable: Kitsuné x Ponystep

Here is a cute promotional video for the forthcoming Kitsuné remix album, Kitsuné x Ponystep. The album is scheduled to be released on July, 6, 2010. It consists of 20 tracks mixed by Jerry Bouthier by artists such as Róisín Murphy, Two Door Cinema Club, and Booka Shade.

The video shows the photo shoot for the album cover. The result reminds me of a Gap ad from the 1990s — lots of pretty white kids in trendy clothes. It is a departure from the usual marker sketch or collage that adorns the covers of Kitsuné compilations.

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Which is the best album cover for the week of June 29, 2010?

Below are six album covers that were preselected from among this week’s new music releases. They were chosen based on Amazon.com sales rank and for their noteworthy album cover designs. Please vote the cover that you believe is the best of the bunch.

3OH!3 – Streets of Gold 3oh3-street_05.jpg buy_now_240.gif   Alex Band – We’ve All Been There aband-weveal_03.jpg buy_now_240.gif
Parkway Drive – Deep Blue parkwa-deepbl_02.jpg buy_now_240.gif   Scissor Sisters – Night Work scisso-nightw_04.jpg buy_now_240.gif
The-Dream – Love King thedre-loveki_07.jpg buy_now_240.gif   Wolf Parade – Expo 86 wolfpa-expo86_05.jpg buy_now_240.gif




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John Lennon albums remastered to commemorate 70th birthday

prnphotos094439-EMI-MUSIC-GIMME-SOM.jpgAccording to a news release from EMI Music, eight of John Lennon’s classic solo albums and other recordings have been digitally remastered from his original mixes to commemorate the late musician’s 70th birthday on October 9, 2010.

The project is being managed by Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono and will launch on October 4 in the U.K. and October 5 in the U.S., with the worldwide release of the eight remastered studio albums and several new compilations.  

The campaign’s new collections include:

  • A hits compilation in two editions titled Power To The People: The Hits
  • A 4CD set of themed discs titled Gimme Some Truth
  • A deluxe 11CD collectors box with the remastered albums, rarities, and non-album singles, titled the John Lennon Signature Box

All of the remastered albums and collections will be available on CD and for download purchase from all major digital service providers.

According to the release, the albums have been digitally remastered from Lennon’s original mixes by Yoko Ono and a team of engineers led by Allan Rouse at EMI Music’s Abbey Road Studios in London and by George Marino at Avatar Studios in New York. All of the remastered titles will be packaged in digisleeves with replicated original album art and booklets with photos and new liner notes by noted British music journalist Paul Du Noyer.

The albums to be reissued are:

  • John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band (1970)
  • Imagine (1971)
  • Some Time In New York City (1972)
  • Mind Games (1973)
  • Walls and Bridges (1974)
  • Rock ‘n’ Roll (1975)
  • Double Fantasy (1980)
  • Milk and Honey (1984)

The John Lennon Signature Box is a deluxe 11 CD and digital collection of the eight remastered albums, a disc of rare and previously unreleased recordings, and an EP of Lennon’s non-album singles. The CDs will be housed in digisleeves within a deluxe box including a collectible limited edition John Lennon art print and a hardbound book featuring rare photos, artwork, collages, poetry, and new liner notes by DeCurtis.

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Best album cover for the week of June 22, 2010

According to our AlbumArtExchange blog poll, the best album cover for the week of June 22, 2010 is Further by The Chemical Brothers. The cover received 44% of the vote. Coming in second was Macy Gray’s The Sellout, followed by Sia’s We are Born.

The cover features a photograph of a woman diving into a pool of water. I have read some online comments from people who wrote that they couldn’t figure out what the image was until they stared at it for a few minutes. I registered immediately for me.

Posted by: zeefritz

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Check back later this evening to vote for the best album cover from among this week’s new music releases. We will have a controversial cover from Scissor Sisters and a rather eclectic assortment of artists.

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Disturbed reveals album cover online

distur-sickne_02.jpgAmerican rock band Disturbed revealed the cover for their forthcoming fifth studio album on their official website, Facebook page and Twitter yesterday. The reveal created a quite a bit of online buzz. The album is scheduled to be released on August 31, 2010 by Reprise Records.

The cover features an image that is rather typical for a heavy metal album. Skulls with glowing eyes are such a cliché that I rarely take the time to write about album art that features one.

The cover for the band’s 2000 debut album The Sickness (right) is quite different. It is a unique and artistically significant album cover. It definitely is in a different class when compared to the cover of Asylum. I suppose those who market this genre of music know what they are doing. Flaming skulls and grim reapers sell — otherwise we wouldn’t see so many of them.

Posted by: zeefritz

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Crayon Room Album Art Screensaver

If you’ve got a PC and you’re an album art enthusiast, you’ve probably envied the iTunes screensaver that your friends with Macs enjoy. If that’s the case, Crayon Room’s Album Art Screensaver is the best PC album art screensaver that I’ve found.

The screensaver is available as a free download on the Crayon Room website. The programmer asks for a Paypal donation from those who enjoy the software.

Visit the Crayon Room Website

screensaver_01.jpgI am using the screensaver with Windows Vista and iTunes 9. The images load quickly and the number of the rows of albums displayed can be changes to increase or decrease the size of the images.

I have a large monitor, so I chose to display eight rows of covers. You can also select various transitions for the covers. I am careful about installing software on my computer. I Googled Crayon Room and didn’t find anything that would raise a red flag.

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There’s a butt on the cover: Scissor Sisters promo video

Scissor Sisters posted a promo video for their new album on YouTube yesterday. Nightwork will be released tomorrow and this is a very creative way to generate publicity for the release.

Posted by: zeefritz

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