Here are the artists who are doing cover art right. This week’s By The Cover brings you the standout album art of the week. 

By The Cover is a fun way for us to pay all of our attention to the design side of albums, which often get forgotten when streaming occurs (and more often than not, that happens when your phones in your pocket). So long, slaved over cover art. You’re usually forgotten.

Not anymore. We’ve got a home for you here.

We’ve seen a lot of weird new releases this week, and that always bodes well for By The Cover, because we dig when people take things a step too far. It oozes creativity.

Dominic Waxing Lyrical – Rural Tonic

I want to say everyone will love this album based off the cover. They won’t. This portrait is beautifully framed, authentic, with a touch of why-is-there-a-shopping-bag-on-a-sheep-farm-insanity. The album is sprinkled with raw, brutal but beautiful vocals, and a love song named after pioneer Soviet space-dog Laika. Could you want more?

Cotillon – The Afternoons

This cover feels like a nice stroll along a beach pier or rocky coast with your headphones in. The color palette is unique, striking, and understated without being muted. It effectively communicates a beach, lo-fi grunge, which is pretty on point for this experimental album.

Spotting – Spotting

Spotting is categorized as Synth Punk. I would say the cover goes super synth – it’s dual toned and futuristic. There is a nice simplicity in the line drawing that implies a purposed design. The music, on the other hand, goes far more punk, and a little more chaotic.

Talos –  Wild Alee

There’s something truly special when an artist pairs their music so flawlessly. Talos has a history of incorporating nature in previous album covers, but this one isolates their haunting falsetto above a beautiful combination bubbling electronic and guitar, paralleled by the iceberg surrounded by pure black. This album cover (and album) is brooding and introspective without evoking too much sadness.

Forro In the Dark – Sand Castle

What kind of music do you expect when you see organic, wild leaves cut into geometric shapes? Is it Brazilian forro music with jazz flute, contagious joy, and no rules? Let me introduce you to Forro in the Dark. It’s tropical with a modern twist, could be described as a fairy soundtrack, and I’m pretty sure they made the music to match the cover, not vice versa.

The Black Angels – Death Song

The Black Angels designed their own cover art for Death Song, and for that reason alone, they are on this list. They’ve consciously designed all of their album covers together, and that’s the visual dedication By The Cover is all about.

“If you line all of them up, from Passover to Directions to See a Ghost to Phosphene Dream, then my thinking is that Indigo Meadow sits in the middle of those and the faces are looking to the past and to the future. And since the next one – to my mind – is Clear Lake Forest, it sort of mirrors Phosphene Dream’s design, and then the cover art for Death Song kind of mirrors the circular design of Directions To See A Ghost, so the next one will kind of have a design similar to Passover. My thinking was that you line all of them up, then it becomes one piece. Indigo Meadow is the middle piece where the faces are looking forwards and backwards.” — The Black Angel’s Christian March 

It’s psychedelic. We get it. We don’t love it.

Mr. Mitch– Devout

If I told you this cover belonged to a UK grime artist would you believe me? The cover is polished, white, reflective, and clean. Mr. Mitch explores this aesthetic in a more refined sound.

Charly Biss – Guppy

Charly Bliss nailed 90s alternative throwback.


Did we miss an album cover you think crushed it? Let us know on Twitter.

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