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Album covers: What's hidden in the art?


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Showing 1-13 of 13 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 30, 2012 1:25:21 PM PDT
Kil Roi says:
Check out Sparks' album Propaganda. Is that a naked woman in the propeller wash? What do you see?
Are there any other album covers that contain subtle messages?

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 6:04:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 30, 2012 6:07:09 PM PDT
Two Tub Man says:
Blue Oyster Cult's unfairly maligned "Mirrors" album has two sperm in the clouds in the upper left front cover.

On "Last Time Around" by The Buffalo Springfield, Neil Young was estranged from the rest of the band, and
wouldn't pose for the cover. So the other four members were shot from the side, facing left. Young's picture,
with him turned away and looking to the right, was added later. There's also a gap in the "wood" of the cover
between Young and the rest of the band.

I never noticed that hidden artwork on "Propaganda", thanks for pointing out what's now painfully obvious!

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 6:37:06 PM PDT
Kil Roi says:
Two Tub, Yep. Neil definitely looks 'photoshopped' on that cover. Not a bad job for 1968.
That reminds me of the Notorious Byrd Brothers album cover. During the recording of that LP, David Crosby was booted out of the band, and legend has it, his picture was removed from the far right barn window and replaced with a horse.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 6:51:29 PM PDT
Two Tub Man says:
That's a great story about Crosby.

The Ramones' "Subterranean Jungle" album features the bruddahs through the open door of an NYC subway car. Except for drummer Marky, who had been kicked out of the band after the album was done. He's shown in one of the car's windows, away from the rest of the band, and looking more than a little forlorn.

The self titled "Mom's Apple Pie" album has a pie of a different sort hidden in the pie Mom's holding. That pie
was bricked over on later pressings of the album.

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 7:21:42 PM PDT
Crosby certainly thought the "Notorious" cover was deliberate and was furious with McGuinn and Hillman for years over it, although both men denied it. It's pretty obvious, though, that was their intention.

The most famous example of "hidden" album artwork I can think of was the original 3-D cover to The Rolling Stones "Satanic Majesties", which featured all four faces of The Beatles hidden in the foliage surrounding the band. The one-dimensional replication now used for all covers of the album (the original 3-D master was deliberately destroyed a few decades back after a limited-edition vinyl re-release, in order to make the copies more rare), only shows two of the Beatles' faces.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 8:24:25 PM PDT
There's nothing to that legend.

Posted on Jul 1, 2012 12:07:47 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 1, 2012 12:08:29 PM PDT
In response to SGT Pepper making reference to the Stones on the cover, on their own Satanic Majesties, if you look closely, you can find the faces of all four Beatles. Here is one, in the bottom right hand corner, just above the camel, is John Lennon.

Posted on Jul 1, 2012 12:25:13 PM PDT
Kil Roi says:
Here is one that may be obvious--or not. Take a look at Frank Zappa's Trance-Fusion album. The tangle of dolphins take the shape of Frank's trademark mustache and small patch of hair beneath his lip.

Posted on Jul 1, 2012 12:31:48 PM PDT
Obvious or not, not sure...But see if you can count how many human faces there are making up the lion on the cover of Santana's debut. And don't forget the legs stretching down beneath the Lion's chin, which forms the woman's dress.

Posted on Jul 1, 2012 12:54:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 1, 2012 1:21:07 PM PDT
Kil Roi says:
I counted 8 human faces on Santana's lion cover. Make that 9. There's another in the mane in the upper right corner.

Posted on Jul 1, 2012 5:28:49 PM PDT
Greenday's album Insomniac includes several hidden skulls in the packaging and three in the cd insert, 1 for each band member not to mention hidden faces in the flames and a naked woman!

Posted on Jul 2, 2012 9:44:18 AM PDT
S. Stalcup says:
The background of Prince's Around the World in a Day is a woman lying on her back, but that's pretty obvious, I reckon. I mean, it IS Prince.

I suppose everyone knows about the tail wing of the Beasties' album Licensed to Ill, right?

On the cover of the self-titled Ramones LP, John Cummings is flipping Roberta Bayley the bird. He admitted his intent in his posthumous autobiography.

Posted on Jul 2, 2012 11:44:54 AM PDT
On the cover of Moby Grape's debut, one of the members flips the bird to the camera, although this was airbrushed or replaced with a sticker on subsequent pressings.
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Discussion in:  Rock forum
Participants:  7
Total posts:  13
Initial post:  Jun 30, 2012
Latest post:  Jul 2, 2012

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