"When laid open, the Waynai Bible measures 43.5 inches tall and 98 inches wide. Closed, the spine is 34 inches thick. The book has 8,048 pages and weighs in at 1,094 pounds." [more inside]
A timeline of Blue Note jazz album covers.
Julian Cope's "Album of the Month" series brims with personal, passionate, and often mind-expanding writing about records like James Brown's The Payback, Nico's The Marble Index, and a bunch of stuff you've never heard of. (previously) [more inside]
...this symmetric aperture is called the "fenetre de breeze", roughly translated meaning the "zephyr window".
The Great Crepitation Contest of 1946 [mp3 at bottom] lingers on in the memories of record collectors, radio historians, and a generation of post-war vulgarians from Dr. Demento to Howard Stern. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's vivid recording of the contest (conceived at a company stag party) inspired legions of LP cover artists: an early public airing was encased in a sleeve designed by one of the earliest proponents of the illustrated album cover. Later editions were adorned with shockingly detailed renditions of the Great Contest, created by a variety of anonymous geniuses. (Speaking of art, it was also a rumored favorite of Salvador Dali). Though it has inspired various lurid myths, we've learned a little bit about the deepest roots of the contest right here on Metafilter. [more inside]
Project Thirty-Three "The seemingly infinite number of vintage record jackets that convey their message with only simple shapes and typography never cease to amaze me. Project Thirty-Three is my personal collection and shrine to circles and dots, squares and rectangles, and triangles, and the brilliant designers that made them come to life on album covers."
"Art is an invention of aesthetics, which in turn is an invention of philosophers.... What we call art is a game."
What If Your Favorite Album Was a Book? Rock classics from from Arcade Fire to Zeppelin, reimagined as book covers. [more inside]
Vintage Vanguard is a Japanese web site featuring the cover art for every Blue Note album ever released. Other labels are featured as well.
Do you like musical instruments with lots of keyboards? And lots and lots of dials? Then you may like 36 15 MOOG: Stuff with Moog and/or 60's and 70's vintage synths in it. (related Ask MeFi) [more inside]
A Day in the Life of Abbey Road; (sorry for the prosaic lead-in link - at least I didn't use the word "iconic!") Enjoy watching Beatles' fans and locals negotiate London's famous Abbey Road crosswalk. I miss album covers; I'm of the generation of high school kids who spent a zillion hours flipping through them in record stores. The best of them - like Abbey Road - could be high-impact and sometimes accompanied their records like a kind of graphic mini-novel. What were some of your favorites and why?
Before Alex Steinweiss invented the album cover in 1938, at the age of 23, all albums came in plain brown wrappers. Steinweiss's idea to create a package that had something visual on the outside to lure the consumer was a huge success. A tribute show for the 90-year-old Steinweiss will be held at the Robert Berman Gallery in Santa Monica, California, until February 23, 2008. More about Steinweiss here and here. First link via.
Ron Murphy cut records, but not just any records. Responsible for cutting the actual vinyl master plates of much of the now revered Detroit Techno including Jeff Mills, Carl Craig, Underground Resistance's seminal Knights of the Jaguar, and much more - he demonstrated impeccable craftsmanship and skill in both mastering records for sound and aesthetics at company known as Sound Enterprises source link AKA National Sound Corporation. Schooled in Motown, dubplates and jukeboxes, he is the bespoke-crafted, analog link between the digital future and analog past that is the roots of Techno music and modern techno DJ culture. [more inside]
When LPs Roamed The Earth: classic album covers for records you have almost certainly never heard of.