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Beef of the Year: Bring Me the Horizon Accuses Coldplay of Jacking Their Album Artwork

What do you think? Blatant theft or honest mistake?

by Dan Ozzi
12 November 2015, 5:30pm

In case you’re unfamiliar with Bring Me the Horizon, they’re essentially One Direction for teens who post neck tattoo gifs on Tumblr. They’ve led a remarkably uneventful existence so far in their however many years they’ve been a band (let’s do a quick Wikipedia search here and holy shit they’ve been around for 12 years???). But the British pop-metalcore act finally stepped up and made themselves semi-interesting this week when they took shots at fellow Brits, Coldplay, specifically over their new album cover.

Many fans pointed out that the cover of Coldplay’s forthcoming album, A Head Full of Dreams—which is just a random bunch of circles—looks kinda somewhat similar to Bring Me the Horizon’s 2013 album Sempiternal, which is also just a bunch of random circles.

Here they are on the side. Bring Me the Horizon on the left, Coldplay on the right...

Twitter was appropriately outraged...

Frontman and aptly named British man Oli Sykes addressed this controversy of the year, going so far as to say Chris Martin and company were “jackin our steez.” Oh hell yeah, baby. We got ourselves a Brit fight!

Sykes told NME that whether intentional or not, he finds it hard to believe Coldplay wouldn’t have noticed the similarities. Definitely. 38-year-old Chris Martin totally seems like the kind of guy who stays up on all the latest Hot Topic bands and this was unquestionably a deliberate act of malice. Let’s see what Sykes had to say on the matter…

"I've no idea, at the end of the day it's not our symbol, it's a very old symbol," Sykes said. "They might not have known at first, but obviously if you google 'flower of life' the first thing that comes up is 'Bring Me The Horizon - Sempiternal', it's like, if you Google the images, someone's gonna have said something to them, so whether it was intentional or not, it is the same."

Good point. Even if Martin had not heard Bring Me the Horizon before—which again, is a ludicrous premise—he should have at least googled “random bullshit symbols that people tattoo on their wrists to appear more culturally profound than they actually are.” Let’s hear what the symbol means to Sykes…

"It represents everything... For me, it was something that I'd never seen before, I'd never even heard about it and as soon as I did I saw it everywhere, in weird things and weird places and weird times."

In case you're still naive enough to think two British guys tracing nonsensical quasi-spiritual symbols onto their album covers is just a coincidence, let’s look into more albums. Here’s Bring Me the Horizon’s 2015 album, That’s the Spirit

Hm, where have we seen this provocative "rain shield" symbol before? Oh right, look familiar?:

This was used years ago as a logo by the popular band Jawbreaker. And get ready for this. This symbol, often known as the "umbrella," was actually taken from the Morton Salt logo. Coincidence?

But it goes deeper. Let’s look at Bring Me the Horizon’s 2009 expanded two-disc album, Suicide Season: Cut Up!:

Where have we seen this artwork before? Oh right. How about the band's 2008 original version of the album…

Look familiar? Stealing from their own cover! How low can you sink in your plagiarism? But hang on there, Coldplay fans, don't get on your high horses just yet. Let’s look at the cover of Coldplay's 2008 album Viva La Vida

When you look closely at it, you’ll notice it bears a remarkable similarity to French artist Eugène Delacroix’s painting "Liberty Leading the People," which came out a full 178 YEARS before Viva La Vida. Plenty of time for Martin to have caught this mistake.

But hang on, BMTH and Coldplay fans. Get ready to have your minds blown. It turns out both bands ripped off their circly album cover logos from a thing called a Spirograph, a children's drawing toy that has been around since the 60s. WOAH:

Dan Ozzi is on Twitter if you want to talk more conspiracy theories - @danozzi