I was thinking this morning about the demise of the great album cover. In the past couple decades I am sure there have been some but I can’t come up with any off the bat. Maybe the revival of vinyl will bring it back? I am not holding my breathe.
One of my favorite album covers- and albums of all time is The Clash’s “London Calling.” The album cover pays homage to Elvis Presley’s self-titled debut album in design. The photograph shows The Clash’s Paul Simonon smashing his bass guitar against the stage on September 20, 1979. Recently, Simonon explained that he was smashing his guitar out of frustration when he learned the bouncers wouldn’t let the audience out of their seats during the concert. The photographer who took this iconic shot Pennie Smith didn’t want the picture to be used, she thought it was too out of focus. Q Magazine has named this photograph the best rock and roll photograph of all time, “it captures the ultimate rock and roll moment, total loss of control.” The music inside the album is even greater than the album cover.