Album Art Advanced

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You'd think declining CD sales and digital music transfer often relegating cover art to thumbnail images would fill a survey of 30 prominent label heads and designers with biblical invective and hand-wringing. But leaf through designer/writer Adrian Shaughnessy's Cover Art by: New Music Graphics and you'll find the designers stoic. Many have already seen their vinyl playspace drop size to a CD, even more are open minded about digital delivery and all are serious about making art.

If anything, it's the imagery doing the yelling; Shaughnessy presents work with a myriad of stylistic differences and tones, from understated photographs of work for U.K. label Touch to the neo-psychedelia in Bjorn Copeland's work with his group Black Dice. Read the impressions of designers behind the graphics and you'll come away convinced of the album cover's peerage in the contemporary art and illustration world. Whatever medium is next, it feels like the contributors will present a fitting visual partner.

Bjorn Copeland's sleeve for 2004 Black Dice LP 'Wastered' on Paw Tracks.

D&AD-winning Brit Dylan Kendle did this for Einóma's 'Milli Tónverka' CD in 2003 on the now-defunct Vertical Form imprint.

French studio Check Morris did this CD cover for remixes of Chin Chin's 'Toot D'Amore', a 2007 release on Dialect Recordings

Kning Disk label's Mattias Niksson designed this in 2006 for Maja Ratje & Lotta Melin's 'Illegal Parking' 12" record. Cover Art by: New Music Graphics is 320 pages long with 400 color illustrations, published by Chronicle Books, and available for $26.40 at Amazon.
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