As we are well established into the new year, it’s time for another of my annual rundowns of my favourite Australian album covers of the previous 12 months. 2012 didn’t feel as vibrant cover design wise as perhaps 2011 did, there were fortunately a select few gems covering some very interesting music and as to be expected, a lot of it was for independent and under-the -radar releases rather than the more chart friendly fodder. I’ve tried where possible to credit the creators of the artwork, feel free to leave a comment if you can fill in any of the gaps.
Lake Air: Dappled Cities
That’s a very unusual photo – this cover is saved by a beautiful colour combination between the light blue and magenta red and some nice typography.
Provenance – Collected Works: The Lovetones
Love, love the very 70’s-ish illustration employed, complimented by some very beautifully complimenting typography – unfortunately, the rest of the package doesn’t quite live up to the promise presented by that wonderful cover.
Having a Beard is the New Not Having a Beard: The Beards
Artwork: Chris Edser
I featured this cover earlier this year on my blog, extensively and lovingly rendered, the cover folds out to this fantastic poster. There is also a film clip that comes to life straight off of this poster.
Sights and Sounds: Made In Japan
Artwork: Patrick Meehan
Nice handrawn type which I am a sucker for – not much more to add.
Artwork: Simon Christou
Stick a fox on it, works everytime!
The Late Blue: Gypsy & The Cat
Artwork: Mark Alsweiler
This almost ‘Dylan-esque’ rendering (refer to his painting on the cover of his album ‘Self Portrait’ to see what I mean) seems perfectly appropriate for the music of Gypsy & The Cat. Quite spectacular on a 12 inch format I would imagine.
Pacifica: The Presets
Art Direction, Design: Jonathan Zawada
While I’m not a big fan of the 3D rendering employed to portray the artists on the cover, I can certainly appreciate the thought and direction that has been put behind this cohesive package for the Presets.
The two covers below are for singles from the album which I actually prefer.
A is for Alpine: A is for Alpine
Artwork: Tim Royall
I’m not sure what it all means, but it was certainly a cover that stood out on the racks, and a beautifully designed package as a whole.
Broken Brights: Angus Stone
There seems to be at least two separate cover designs for this album, this being my favourite of the two. The deluxe package that came in the (above) bag was spectacular and very thoughtfully put together. No idea who designed the package as a whole, maybe he did it himself?
The Touch Of You: Barry Morgan
Lovely Kitsch-ey cover, perfectly appropriate for Mr Morgan, who a little of goes a long way!
Black Rabbits: Grinspoon
Another beautiful cover by the wonderful WBYK – not looking quite as WBYK-ish as that piece for The Lovetones, but carried very effectively over the whole package and marketing material I have seen.
Anastasis: Dead Can Dance
Sleeve Design: Berendan Perry
Photography: Zsolt Sigmond
Lovely and approriate cover photo by the awesomely named photographer Zsolt Sigmond
Slay Me In My Sleep: Grand Salvo
Design: Mark Gowing
Night Sky: Sophie Hutchings
Design: Mark Gowing
Where would I be in these end of year reviews without the wonderful work that Mark Gowing produces for Preservation? If only more music labels took such a considered approach to the design of their releases. Two more beautiful examples this year, Night Sky being one of my favourite releases of the year. I do miss those big poster cover foldouts they did though!
The Moment: Mia Dyson
Great photo – overall, nicely handled.
Cable Mount Warning: The Maple Trail
This one was a real surprise to me, perhaps the most underrated release of the year, you’ve got to listen to this if you have the means an absolutely beautiful collection of understated tunes. That said, what a gorgeous and unusual cover! Absolutely like nothing else I’ve seen this year, no idea who was responsible, but well done to everyone involved.
Thinking In Textures: Chet Faker
Art Direction & Design: Christopher Doyle
Photography: Jefton Sungkar
Once again, designer Christopher Doyle doesn’t disappoint, he’s getting rather good at these things.
The Drifter’s Dawn: The Tiger & Me
Artwork: Tim Allan @ Made Visual
When I first saw this online I excitedly thought that maybe that little booklet thing on the front, was actually attached to the cover – unfortunately that’s not the case, still an effective piece of artwork though.
Toward The Low Sun: The Dirty Three
Artwork: Mick Turner
Mick Turner, may you never put down your paintbrush. Another beautiful selection of tunes from The Dirty Three once again complimented by the artists deft touch for their cover graphics.
Bless This Mess: Lisa Mitchell
Graphic Design & Cover Artwork: Grace West
Drawings + Scribblings: Lisa Mitchell
Oh Lisa! You never let me down with you cover designs! Another very beautiful cohesive package design from the lovely songstress together with another batch of wonderful music.
So there you have it, feel free to suggest any covers that you may have seen that you think deserve to be on the list. Also, any updates on missing design credits would also be greatly appreciated!