Music sure can make you feel OLD. Like when you remember that Spice Girls’ “Wannabe” would be old enough to drive a car today if songs could drive cars! Or when you think of all the musicians that once had hair but now do not have hair! Crazy, right?
But nothing makes you feel like time is passing you by quite like revisiting the animals from your favorite album covers, especially when you consider that each and every one of them has met its demise. Feel OLD yet? Here are some famous musical animals who are assuredly resting in the beyond!
Rick Springfield – Working Class Dog (1981)
A dog wearing a shirt and tie? Woof, how’s that for some 80s throwback humor? What really pulls off the whole gag is his naive canine smile, oblivious to the notion of his own mortality. Keep smiling, pup. Smile all the way into the silent grace of that unknowable abyss.
Blur – Parklife (1994)
Admit it, you felt a little scared the first time you saw the cover of Blur’s 1994 album Parklife and its crazy-eyed racing dogs. They don’t seem so intimidating in retrospect, knowing that the two were merely racing towards the inevitable chasm of eternal blackness. Run on, little doggies. The end awaits you.
Blink-182 – Cheshire Cat (1994)
How’s this for feeling old: You remember Blink-182 without Travis Barker! That’s right, before it was the Mark, Tom, and Travis show, Scott Raynor drummed on this debut album. As we all know, Raynor left the band just before their breakout success and as we also all know, the cat on this cover soon felt the cold touch of the Grim Reaper. “Defend pop punk?” Perhaps. Defend our beloved pets from their ultimate fate? Impossible.
The Beach Boys – Pet Sounds (1966)
Does anything take you back to your youth more than the dreamlike intro to The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds? “Wouldn’t it be nice” if we knew that these hungry, loveable goats on the cover were still with us? But given that the album came out nearly 50 years ago, there’s no way they aren’t all nothing but ash in the wind, every last one of them. Hopefully, they enjoyed this feeding from Brian Wilson and co. They only got so many more.
Aerosmith – Get a Grip (1993)
Ugh, how embarrassing is it that you once thought Aerosmith was cool? Of course now, you can look back and realize that their 1993 album Get a Grip isn’t exactly cutting edge rock ‘n’ roll, nor is the cow on its cover still walking the fields and ranches, sporting this udder piercing. Despite its celebrity, it was likely among the 100,000 cows that are killed each day to supply Americans with the meat-heavy diets that will ultimately bury us all, sooner rather than later. Will you be ready to go blindly into that darkness?
Pixies – Doolittle (1989)
Oh man, is there anything that perfectly captures your angsty teenage grunge phase better than the Pixies’ Doolittle? Despite the brooding nature of the music, those were happier times, before you were old enough to realize that the monkey on the cover is gone for good, eulogized on one of the album’s songs. One monkey gone to heaven and one adolescence gone to waste, never to return. The end will come soon and you’ll be able to take nothing with you but your regret.
Alice in Chains – S/T (1995)
Speaking of your grunge phase, who can forget this Alice in Chains classic or this sad dog on the cover? Poor little guy, only born with three legs! Hang in there, boy. You’ll soon be headed somewhere where our physical bodies are irrelevant—that limitless plane of non-existence. Run along there and be free.
Fleetwood Mac – Tusk (1979)
Woah, talk about a #TBT. It’s been 36 years since Fleetwood Mac released Tusk, which means this adorable, precocious dog is now tugging at the pant legs of Death.
Rush – Signals (1982)
This album came out 33 YEARS AGO. Feel old yet? No? Well maybe you will when you consider that the average lifespan of a dalmatian is 12 years, making the one on this cover gone several times over. Picture him lifting his leg towards the void now, sniffing the hydrants of the endless stretch of afterlife.
Jawbreaker – Unfun (1990)
You still remember those dumb teen arguments you had with your friends about whether or not Jawbreaker “sold out” by releasing Dear You on a major label, but one thing you can still agree on is the fact that the cat on the cover of Unfun has gone through all nine of its lives. “Selling out” is an irrelevant concept and we’re all insignificant specks on a decaying rock, orbiting a dying, distant sun.
Beastie Boys – Some Old Bullshit (1994)
Some old bullshit indeed, Beastie Boys! This is a collection of the Beasties’ earliest works, which they released in 1994. That means the adorable golden retriever on its cover can no longer play fetch or catch a Frisbee. It can no longer even sit there like a good boy, staring off into the distance. He does nothing and is nothing—simply a tiny memory buried grain by grain beneath the sands of time. Like a good dog, he waits for you there.
Dan Ozzi is on Twitter and will one day feel the inescapable cold hand of Death - @danozzi