Thursday, October 15, 2009

I bought it just because I liked the cover



Treefrogdemon's lovely story about buying an Incredible String Band album because the cover appealed reminds me of buying Le Pas du Chat Noir for the same reason.. as Bloody Paradise notes, also in the previous post, serendipity can be a wonderful thing.

Which albums have you bought just because you liked the picture on the cover, or because they interested you for some other non-musical reason?

23 comments:

nilpferd said...

Add shane's recent At swim two birds post, brought to our attention because of the sane one's eye for graphics, if I recall correctly..

Mnemonic said...

I used to do this a lot when I was living in North Africa because there was no access to recorded music there (no books either). If the shortwave radio co-operated, we got 30 minutes of John Peel once a week on the World Service. So, when I was on holiday in Europe and North America, I would walk into record shops and buy up to 20 albums at a time to take back and the emphasis would be on new music that I knew little or nothing about. One I particularly remember buying for the cover was Seals & Crofts - Sudan Village. It's got a very Douanier Rousseau-style cover of the boys in the middle of a Sudanese village with lots of dancing people. File-sharing? We made cassette copies by the dozen for everyone we knew and they returned the favour.

SatanKidneyPie said...

I bought the first I Am Kloot 7" single cos it came in a rather snazzy paper bag with some childlike drawings on the front.

Exodus said...

I used to do this regularly wen I was browsing second hand vinyl shops as a teenager. King Crimson's 'In The Wake Of Poseidon' was one, and the minimalist music stave cover of 'Faust IV' another

Chris said...

In days of yore, when I was still at school, I used to do a regular trawl of the record shops in central Manchester and scrounge all of the spare sleeves they had (for displays). I got a few great images (hidden amongst the pile of dross) for my bedroom wall and was sometimes tempted to try the music. I can't honestly remember any that made me buy the black plastic bit to go with the cardboard.

Exodus said...

Meant to add that in both those cases, the music seemed a pretty good reflection of the sleeve design, or vice versa.

goneforeign said...

I've bought dozens of albums over the years based on an initial reaction to the cover, one comes to mind, I was in a huge record store in Picadilly in the 80's and I was attracted to a B/W photo of a bloke on a cover, I bought it and it was my very first Christy Moore album, still gets a fair bit of play.
There's also one that I hate because of the cover and would never buy, anytime I see it in a store I'll turn it backwards, it's by Wes Montgomery and the photo is of an overfilled filthy ashtray, it fills the cover.

nilpferd said...

A friend of mine hated the cover of R.E.M.'s Monster, because he said looking at it gave him a migrane.

Though I love the album, I always disliked the cover of The Go-betweens' 16 lovers lane- fairly arbitrary graphics and a particularly annoying soft-focus shot of Lindy Morrison half naked in some kind of a furry wrap. Only rescued by a similar shot of a pouting Robert Forster in a tartan rug on the reverse side.
I don't turn it round in stores, though.

Shoey said...

The earliest impulse purchase on cover alone would be "Wish You Were Here" - that one worked out well. Bought more Factory than I should because of Peter Saville & quite a lot of suspect offerings from 4AD. Crass often had sleeves & liner notes that were better than the music.

steenbeck said...

I love the track, Nilpferd.

I bought Chronic Town because I had a crush on a boy who like REM AND I liked the cover. First cassette I ever bought, and if felt like a very very risky purchase. As it happened I loved it. And everything else REM did for a while.

nilpferd said...

I bought my first Smiths recordings because I had a crush on someone who liked them, it was a strange compilation of five singles; This charming man, Stop me if you think you've heard this one before, How soon is now, Bigmouth strikes again, Shoplifters of the world unite if I remember correctly, it had a horrible photo of the band members on the insert instead of the usual fifties film scenes and was probably a release for the Australian market.

ejay said...

One thqt springs to mind is a CD I bought in Brazil (I may have done a post abou it actually), it had a beautiful blue blackground and the silhouette of an aeroplane. The title of the album was RRRRRRRRROCK!!! I thought it looked great. There are other examples, but I remember this one because I didn't really like the music in the end.

saneshane said...

as I'm busy.. I've only got around to thinking up 3 EOTWQ's so far, for when it's my go......

...this being one of them!



(lucky I have a drawing board.. cos it's back to it for me)

nilpferd said...

Sorry about that, Shane. Still, at least the other two aren't

*what's your favourite beer

and

*what part of your anatomy would you most like to photoshop, why, and how.

Right?

Shane?


Oh, shit...

saneshane said...

he he!


this is very chilled
cover image reminds me of Georges-Pierre Seurat in its own way..


this isn't my collection but close:
http://rateyourmusic.com/list/jkra3168/the_art_of_the_album__vaughan_oliver/

if you watch the making of pixies box set... that's my dream buying for packaging p**n!


I could of brought some Nigel Grierson (this Mortal Coil) prints.. back in the day... sigh!

His Photo on Head over Heals.. (I think) got me to listen to the Cocteau Twins in 83 ish.. I owe 23 envelope a lot.

nilpferd said...

A cover like Doolittle was the sort of graphics we aspired to at Arch. school.. over-exposed lines, superimposed images, a mix of linework and alienated photoimagery, negative-image style white lines on dark backgrounds. But we didn't have access to photoshop back then, so had to make do with black and white photocopiers- I remember scrunching up aluminium foil to photocopy a background for one plan, which I then overlaid with photo cutouts and transparent paper to do the linework on, and cutting-and-pasting the whole lot after some watercoloured pencil washing for a single, expensive, A2 colour copy...

steenbeck said...

We could do a crush-motivated-music purchase side question.

Japanther said...

one of my life mottos has been "Always Judge A 7" By It's Cover" (it usually is a fair reflection of what's inside)

so, i've bought plenty based on cover or band name over the years. Le Tigre's "Hot Topic" 7" springs to mind...

DarceysDad said...

Ooh, ooh! I did that only last week!! And then emailed tincanman a ridiculously apposite song from it, too!!!

I'd love to tell you about it, but I'm going to bastardize the cover for my Northern Social #2 CD compilation, and don't want to ruin the surprise.

And I've also just been told I've used up my allocation of exclamation marks for the week, so you'll have to wait.

SatanKidneyPie said...

@ Japanther - do you remember when we made a pact to buy CDs from the "Albums: £1" display at Disc N Tape? I ended up with an album by The Optic Nerve. It was bloody awful. Obviously I'd never heard of them, so that must have been selected on the basis of the sleeve alone. Who did you end up with?

Japanther said...

@SKP - yeah yeah I DO remember the pact!!, but can't for the life of me remember what I got, but i've got fragments of no-bloody-chance-of-ever-gonna-be's
like The Slingbacks ("All Pop No Star") and and.....Octopus?? was that the band or the song? I think it was the band...

.....Ah! Got it! I just remembered...I got an album by a band called Betty Seveert or something like that....it was really really bad!

Lostthelot said...

My fave was always Fill Your Head with Rock, I have nommed a few off that one (And I'm not the only one). Even got a T shirt (Still Today) that is really a rip-off of the cover. Music (Generally) doesn't disappoint either (Apart from Drivin' Wheel and a couple of other wince-inducing forget-me- please tracks). Love the cover for pure distilled energy. Love the music too.

Mnemonic said...

There was a band called Octopus and a friend of mine was in it (though I didn't know him at the time)