6 December 2013

U2 - 'Ordinary Love' artwork by Oliver Jeffers

Link: Oliver Jeffers
Link: Record Store Day

It's probably not since Michael Cina's work for Matthew Dear that a sleeve with a painted portrait has been featured here. And this one, by Ireland's Oliver Jeffers, already had me overcoming my own indifference to U2 when it was released last week as a limited 10" vinyl pressing for Record Store Day. A song featured in the film Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, it suddenly has more resonance given the passing of its iconic subject.

3 December 2013

Debukas - I Am Machinery by Richard Robinson

Link: Richard Robinson
Link: Debukas
Link: 2020Vision

Available now is the Debukas album I Am Machinery on 2020 Vision. As already featured in full on the wonderful Collate, it incorporates a great custom typeface by the masterful Richard Robinson (that seemingly follows on rather nicely from his contemporary stencil-based re-design for Dummy).

30 October 2013

For The Record #6: Kate Moross

Link: Kate Moross
Link: Studio Moross
Link: Stiff Records
Link: Design Manchester 13
Link: Paul Gorman's Reasons to be Cheerful book

Ahead of her talk at Design Manchester 13 tomorrow (alongside Malcolm Garrett, Peter Saville and Mark Farrow, no less), Kate Moross selects the Kandinsky-inspired 1977 work by Barney Bubbles for The Damned's Music For Pleasure as her personal favourite sleeve.

"I didn't know what it was when I first found it but I loved it immediately," she says. "Some people will obviously know about Barney Bubbles but I still don't think he's had the recognition that he deserves. Not when you consider the amount of great work he did.

"I've got to know Bubbles' biographer Paul Gorman and he's said that he sees some of him in me. Not necessarily in terms of our styles... but it's a huge compliment."

Kate Moross' own book, Make Your Own Luck, is published by Prestel April 2014.

Manchester Confidential also has a feature on Design Manchester 13.

29 October 2013

Thomas Azier work by Ben Roth

Link: Ben Roth
Link: Thomas Azier

A long overdue post featuring work by the Berlin-based Ben Roth for electropop multi-instrumentalist Thomas Azier.

It's a monochrome series that is leading up to an eventual album release that comes complete with a moody aesthetic previously explored through Roth's work for the Vulture label. Roth has also developed another direction through a couple of colour-heavy sleeves for Alan Braxe and Benjamin Diamond that are also worth checking out.

20 May 2013

Various Artists - Interpretations on F.C. Judd by Optigram

Link: Optigram
Link: Public Information

Coming after last year's 35 track F.C. Judd collection, Electronics Without Tears, the Public Information label has invited Chris Carter, Perc, Pye Corner Audio, Holly Herndon, Mordant Music and more to reconfigure selected sounds from his extensive archive. Optigram has, in turn, delivered slick monochrome artwork to house crisp white vinyl. Limited edition with 500 copies worldwide plus substantially less exclusive/sexy digital versions.

29 March 2013

Mount Kimbie - Cold Spring Fault Less Youth artwork by Leif Podhajsky

Link: Leif Podhajsky
Link: Mount Kimbie
Link: Warp

With that amazing Horrors box set recently unveiled plus an archive of visual material for names like Foals, Bonobo and Tame Impala, Aussie artist Leif Podhajsky's kaleidoscopic view of the world is well established. However his latest imagery for Mount Kimbie's upcoming long-player takes a more restrained graphic, almost mid-century approach yet it simultaneously appears to nod towards Matisse's collage work and, pioneer of the album cover, Alex Steinweiss. So while Podhajsky's more psychedelic offerings will continue to thrill, it's great to see the arrival of this other, cleaner but equally intriguing aesthetic.

20 February 2013

Objekt/Cosmin TRG - 'Shuttered/Auster' by Give Up Art and Shaun Bloodworth

Link: Give Up Art
Link: Shaun Bloodworth
Link: The Green Series
Link: Bleep.com

The second in the Bleep.com co-curated Green Series is another highly collectable split release. Again boasting a die-cut, embossed and hand-stamped outer sleeve (with internal photography by Shaun Bloodworth), this one features music from the Berlin-based Objekt and Romania's Cosmin TRG (whose second album will be out in April via 50 Weapons).

The run of deluxe packages - complete with signed colour art prints - is already spoken for. The (still beautiful) standard version can currently be pre-ordered. Be quick though. Only 500 copies worldwide and released next week.

13 February 2013

The Draughtsman - '1694 EP' artwork by Alex Egan

Link: Alex Egan

Renaissance man or control freak? Whatever, Alex Egan's release as The Draughtsman comes complete with artwork by the producer. Of course, Egan is more than adept at producing tasty music-oriented design with his output gracing labels including Phantasy Sound. However the polymath's double (green) vinyl offering is particularly special.

Evidently a homage to Peter Greenaway's The Draughtman's Contract, its depiction of ordered nature plays against some more haphazard type. With remixes from Roman Flügel, Cosmo Vitelli and Tim Paris, it's available to purchase from Phonica.

6 February 2013

Dinos Chapman - Luftbobler design by FUEL

Link: Fuel Design
Link: The Vinyl Factory 

Limited Edition details:
  • Four plate copper etching by Dinos Chapman, hand coloured on 300gsm Somerset Velvet soft white paper
  • Five colour screen printed artwork across four panels of cloth-bound bespoke board
  • Two 180-gram heavyweight hand etched records, containing the album's 13 tracks, pressed on the EMI 1400 in Hayes, Middlesex
  • Limited to 300 copies worldwide, each hand signed and numbered by the artist
  • One in every 10 copies contains an exclusive bonus track, pressed on an additional one-sided 12"
  • Mastered for vinyl by Noel Summerville at 3345 Mastering
  • Music written and produced by Dinos Chapman
  • Original etching by Dinos Chapman
  • Design by FUEL

One in every 10 copies also contains an additional one-sided 12" vinyl pressing of an exclusive bonus track, which will never be subsequently released on any format.

This limited edition is available to pre-order now. The Vinyl Factory will release 'Luftbobler' on gatefold vinyl, CD and digital formats on 25 February 2013. An accompanying, site-specific audio-visual installation will take place at The Vinyl Factory in Soho, London from 28 February to 3 March 2013.

  • The first 100 copies of this edition will be priced at £200
  • The next 100 copies of this edition will be priced at £250
  • The last 100 copies of this edition will be priced at £300

DJ Rashad - 'Rollin' artwork by Optigram

Link: Optigram 
Link: Alex Trochut
Link: Hyperdub

Another sleeve from Manuel Sepulveda of Optigram for the Hyperdub label. This time it's a visualisation for an upcoming four track EP by DJ Rashad: a name synonymous with Chicago's footwork sound. Not that this is completely new territory for Sepulveda (he previously designed an album cover for, scene stalwart, Traxman on Planet Mu) but it is representative of Hyperdub's continued diversification.

This one sees the designer creating the sort of dark textures that typified Ikonika's 2010 album while also making use of a bold typeface created by Alex Trochut.

2 February 2013

Fort Romeau - 'SW9' artwork by Michael Cina

Link: Michael Cina
Link: John Klukas
Link: Ghostly

More beautiful Ghostly/Spectral work from Michael Cina that picks up from the painterly figurative style of his previous Matthew Dear sleeve. Only this time (for the 100% Silk-affiliated Fort Romeau) the paint adds a gauzy texture to a photograph of a woman by John Klukas with further veiling of the image via a more rigid graphic overlay. Cina pairs this with some sophisticated and carefully arranged type on the reverse. Out 11th March.