joydivision-closer

‘The 20 Greatest Album Covers’ according to The Burning Blogger, of course, which means there will be disagreements; as this list is limited to album covers I am aware of, though I did look a little at covers outside of my own album collection to make sure I wasn’t missing out any absolute musts.

This list, just to clarify, is about the cover art, not necessarily the music itself – for example, I’m not a Led Zeppelin fan. However, at least four or five of the albums listed here would also make my all-time best CD list as well. What makes a great album cover is a multi-faceted question. It could be just something very cool (most Bjork covers, for example). Or it could go beyond that; an image that really aptly represents that album and its music (Joy DivisionCloser, for example, or Manic Street Preachers’ ‘The Holy Bible’).

A theme that carries through the entire piece of art, being a marriage of music and visual art (Nirvana’s In Utero, for example, with its stunning pregnant angel, has incredible artwork continuing the theme, as well as lyrics across the album that refer to pregnancy, childbirth, death, and the life cycle). Or something that resonates with that moment in time, ensuring future nostalgia (Hole’s Live Through This).

Or in some cases it might be something complicated or esoteric, so that the album cover itself becomes a kind of puzzle to be pondered; Michael Jackson’s ‘Dangerous’ for example – I have no idea what’s going on there apart from a lot of cryptic symbolism (I’ll leave all mentions of sinister ‘Illuminati’ connotations out of this article, although there is allegedly a reference or representation of the infamous ‘Great Beast’ Alastair Crowley in there somewhere).

In any case, here’s the top twenty I’ve filtered it down to. You’re bound to disagree with some. If so, let the argument commence…

never

 NIRVANANevermind

A baby, representing innocence, thrown into a corporate world to chase the almighty dollar. Says everything about the social and political backdrop, says much about Nirvana, and in part about what the best grunge and alternative bands were reacting to. Fitting that the perfect album should have a perfect cover representing it.

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Hole-album-livethroughthis

HOLE Live Through This

album-covers_thedoors

THE DOORSFull Circle

album-covers_screamingtrees

SCREAMING TREESUncle Anesthesia

inutero

NIRVANAIn Utero

beegirl

BLIND MELONBlind Melon

album-covers_The-Jimi-Hendrix-Experience-Axis -Bold-as-Love

JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE Axis Bold As Love

album-covers_rhcp

RED HOT CHILLI PEPPERSOne Hot Minute

miles_davis_-_bitches_brew_

MILES DAVIS Bitches Brew

album-covers_frankzappa

FRANK ZAPPA – 200 Motels

houses of the holy LP CD

LED ZEPPELINHouses of the Holy

liar-jesus lizard

JESUS LIZARDLiar

melloncollie

SMASHING PUMPKINSMelloncollie & the Infinite Sadness

dangerous-mj

MICHAEL JACKSONDangerous

stp_purple

STONE TEMPLE PILOTSPurple

album-covers_Babes-in-Toyland-Nemesisters

BABES IN TOYLANDNemesisters

public_enemy_-_1994_muse_sick-n-hour_mess_age

PUBLIC ENEMY – Muse Sick-N-Hour Mess Age

album-covers_buttholesurfers

BUTTHOLE SURFERS After The Astronaut

album-covers_joydivision

JOY DIVISIONCloser

album-covers_themelvins

THE MELVINSElectroretard

So there’s my final selection. I’ve made my bed and will have to lay in it. Have I majorly overlooked something that should’ve been here? If I have, let me know; but not if it’s just to mention The Beatles Sargent Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club – I thought of it, but decided it wouldn’t make this list.

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10 Great Film Posters (According To Me...)

10 GREAT FILM POSTERS…

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