Human beings are shallow. We like things that look nice. And what's bloody wrong with that? Nothing! There's nothing wrong with that. We like pretty women and handsome men and good looking cars and photogenic gammon steaks and album covers good enough for us to leave lying around our flats in an affectedly-casual way. You agree, right? Of course you do.
Anyways, while you read this, bear in mind that I've got a mate who did a sculpture degree, and a subscription to ArtReview, so I know what I'm talking about. It doesn't matter that my subscription lapsed half a decade ago and said mate fucked off to Australia and I've not seen her since. I still know what I'm talking about. I mean, christ, I had a day off work last week and I used it to look round one room of the National Gallery before going to Sainsburys. I definitely know what I'm talking about.
Now that we've established that I know what i'm talking about let's actually let me get on with the talking and talk you through the most heinous, vile, terrible, awful, rubbish record covers of 2015.
Consumer Electronics - Dollhouse Songs
Alright, Consumer Electronics are hardly a household name, and the chances of the average THUMP reader stumbling across a copy of their latest power-electronics/harsh noise masterpiece down in HMV on a Saturday afternoon are painfully slim, but lord have mercy on their souls if they do somehow rub a greasy paw over it while trying to find a Coldplay CD for dad. Not because it sounds horrible —which it does, in a laughably cheesy "I watch snuff movies and admire Peter Sotos, aren't I out there" way— but fuck me, just look at the thing. It's the worst kind of literalism: spooky literalism. They're dolls, right, but imprisoned ones like what we do with the concept of childhood innocence in the 21st century. Nice one lads, making me think very, very hard here.
Blond:Ish - Welcome to the Present
Rumour has it that David Icke rejected the entirety of this for his latest book.
Dam-Funk - Invite the Light
Now, Invite the Light is a good album. I really like it. I like Dam-Funk. He's a nice bloke to interview. He makes good music. He wears cool sunglasses. Christ alive, though, this is one of the most tossed-off, half-arsed bits of album artwork I've seen since Hard Fi changed the game with the VERY BOLD "NO COVER ART" statement piece for their second record Once Upon a Time in the West. It looks like a really shitty reissue of a CD, the kind you'd see in the cheap item cages of Virgin Megastore, a Big Star CD splatered with ever larger price reduction stickers.
DJ Godfather and Chrome - Gitchya
Hi, I'm Josh, I'm 25 years old, I have a laptop, a wifi connection and the ability to watch actual pornography, and I no longer need to masturbate over the front covers of records.
Various artists - Le Freak - Music Inspired by Chic compiled by Joey Negro
The whole Chic revival thing is a little weird. Chic were obviously one of the best bands ever, and seeing Chic live is as close to happiness as I've ever come, but there's something in the way Nile is trotted out as some cutesy totem of disco and hotpants and stacked heels and "Feels Like I'm In Love" and mum's getting cheeky on a Saturday night down the community centre before crying in a taxi on the way home and ironically bad dancing and glitter and wigs that's a little off. This front cover stinks of rose-breath, vol au vents, quiet despair and the soft, sad resignation in the face of the realization that life didn't go how you wanted it to.
Riva Starr - I Believe In You
Orange might be the new black —yes, I have a Netflix account too!— but it's also the worst colour. This is the worst shade of orange. Ergo, this has to be the worst record cover of the year. Just fucking look at it. The lettraset sticker. The faux-Disclosure shading. The funny photo of old people. Grim. Spectacularly grim.
Alexander Robotnick - Music for an Imaginary Club Vol.2
Alexander Robotnick will be performing at the Walton Arms, Scratby Sands, Norfolk, on Thursday the 10th of December. Tickets cost £10 and include a pie and a pint. The Eastern Daily Press call him, "a very exciting talent" and a recent review in the North Norfolk News said he "has stage presence". Alexander started singing in local conservative clubs at the age of 12 and hasn't stopped since. His cover sets are a great showcase for a man of talent. He delights and amazes audiences, young and old alike.
Sven Väth - The Sound Of The 16th Season
Oh, give it a rest, granddad.
Gary Todd - Nora Lilian
Man, old people are absolutely hilarious aren't they? They're funny because they have wrinkles and remember rationing and they aren't very good at using computers and some of them are racists who piss themselves. I love that. Photos of old people are endlessly amusing and if I ever put a record out I'd definitely try and sell my labour by dressing it up with a picture of an old woman standing outside a suburban house while a bloke in "lol hipster!" fancy dress wields a chainsaw in a funny way. That is definitely what I'd do. 100%.
Venetian Snares - Fool the Detector
A gun...made out of sweets....sugar...is...bad?