They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but we all know there’s nothing better than a vinyl collection that ensnares your eyes as well as your ears. We’re all about those record covers so beautiful you’ll want to do more than just rainbow-colour coordinate them in a bookcase, so we’ve scoured the shelves looking for the most wall display-worthy sleeves. Here are our top 10 Aussie album covers of the year so far.
Summer is upon us, and with it will come a tidal wave of Top X of the Year lists. Before we descend down that slippery, objective slope, we thought we’d look over our shoulders at 2015 and throw in our two cents for the best Aussie album covers of the year so far.
King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard – Quarters!
Quarters!, a concept album (four tracks, ten minutes ten seconds each) so neat yet so wonderfully messy, needed an album cover that said it all. Working once again with Jason Galea, this one toned it back a bit, replacing highly detailed collages of tripply visuals with a simple four-panel design influnced by each track.
Captain Kickarse And The Awesomes – Grim Repercussions
After nearly six years’ hiatus, two of the original Sydney prod-rockers got it back together again, recruited a new bassist, and now they’ve given us a long-awaited debut album in the form of Grim Repercussions. Matt Duffin, who’s also art-ed for author Jonathon Franzen, is responsible for the album’s suitably kickarse cover.
Crepes – Cold Summers
Indie poppers Crepes hail from Melbourne, blending together slacker pop and jangly guitars with a touch of whimsical fun. Cold Summers is the band’s debut EP and follow up to last year’s single Ain’t Horrible. Skye Williams provides the album’s trippy artwork.
Daniel Johns – Talk
It’s been four years since Daniel Johns and Silverchair parted ways and, let’s face it, some of us never really got over it. The artwork adorning his debut solo album Talk may be your first indication that he’s taken off in an entirely new direction, so don’t go expecting the grunge of days past: it’s electro-strewn and almost entirely guitar free.
Josh Pyke – But For All These Shrinking Hearts
True story: The artwork for Josh Pyke’s fifth album is a tribute to a 19th century American inventor called Charles Redheffer and his failed endeavour to create the world’s first perpetual motion machine – something Pyke stumbled across whilst googling ideas for a tattoo.
The Jungle Giants – Speakerzoid
The Jungle Giants’ follow up to 2013’s Learn To Exist found its roots and inspiration during a two-week stint in a Parisian apartment. As for the album’s name, that’s the result of frontman Sam Hales’ girlfriend mishearing the lyrics of Sonic Youth’s Teenage Riot.
The RAah Project – Take Me Elsewhere
Mashing up a little bit of everything – namely electronica, hip hop, jazz and soul, Take Me Elsewhere is Melbournian duo The RAah Project’s first full length album since similarly genre-blended Score was released in 2009.
Statues – Together We’re Alone
Photographer Mike Dann is behind the striking artwork for quintet Statues’ debut full-length album. The Perth-based band may be all out aggressive hardcore in sound, but lyrically, they’re a bunch of deeply introspective dudes.
Storm The Sky – Permanence
While we’re dabbling into a contemplative mood, energetic six-piece Storm The Sky’s debut album is an exploration of purpose and existence, and the importance of facing and accepting the personal value of our individual souls. Deep stuff.
Royal Headache – High
Ahh the Petersham water tower, is there anything more beautiful? Most definitely, but that doesn’t mean that this isn’t one of the most striking album covers of the year. Stark yet vibrant black and white, and brimming with grimy attitude, it suits the band down to a tee.
While you’re here, check out our piece on Aussie musicians who are also artists.