Album Artwork, End of Year List, Music

Best Album Covers of 2013

1. The National – Trouble Will Find Me

This is a still from an art installation presented at RISD (Rhode Island School of Design) by Bohyun Yoon in 2003. The installation was called Fragmentation. I find the nose being below the mirror very compelling. I promise that I picked this as my number one before I knew it was from RISD (which is located in my home state). I highly recommend checking out this link to see more photos of the installation:


2. DJ Koze – Amygdala

A delightfully psychedelic cover featuring the artist atop a caribou (perhaps a reference to Caribou’s Dan Snaith’s participation on the album).  Are the Caribou’s legs merely hidden by DJ Koze’s legs or replaced by them?


3. Kurt Vile – Walking On A Pretty Daze

This cover features the work of renown graffiti artist, Stephen Powers (a.k.a. ESPO).  Vile and Powers share Philadelphia as their hometown.


4. Jon Hopkins – Immunity

According to Creative Bloq, “It was created as a collaborative effort between Hopkins, art director Craig Ward and biochemist-turned-artist Linden Gledhill. The trio initially produced a video for each song, using incredible time-lapse photography of crystal growth and chemical reactions. Then the end results were used as the basic for the album artwork.”

Follow the link below to see the beautiful stills and a “how-they-did-it” video.

This link features a montage of the music videos. Watch it on a large screen if you can.;


5. Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires of the City

This cover features a fog enveloped New York City taken by New York Times photographer, Meal Boenzi looking South from the Empire State Building in 1966.


6. Neko Case  – The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You

This album cover depicts Case in a defensive pose which reflects the music on the album well.


7. Darkside – Psychic

I don’t know how to describe this, but I know that I find myself staring at it.


8. Esben and the Witch – Wash The Sins Not Only The Face

The placement of face silhouettes on the cover is intriguing and haunting much like the music within.


9. AM & Shawn Lee – La Musique Numerique

The 80’s throwback flashy neon forms on this cover beckon you to be less serious and have fun.


10. Fuck Buttons – Slow Focus

The item on the cover of this album reportedly was picked up by a band member at the Spitalfields Market, an historic Victorian market hall outside of London.


11. Baths – Obsidian

This cover was designed by Young Replicant, the moniker of director Alex Takacs and collaborators (including creative partner and producer Joe Nankin).  There are two more faces wrapped in the cloak.  Did you notice them?


12. Forest Swords – Engravings

This cover was designed by the musician.


13. Disclosure – Settle

This stylized graphic overlay over a photo has become an iconic image for 2013.


14. Oneohtrix Point Never – R Plus Seven

This cover features a still from the 1982 Georges Shwizgebel animated short, “Le ravissement de Frank N. Stein.”


15. William Tyler – Impossible Truth

This album cover is fantastic in all its ordinary suburban-ness.  I also love the color filter used.


16. Savages – Silence Yourself

This is so old school and awesome.


17. Blood Orange – Cupid Deluxe

In the words of the artist, Devonte Hynes, “not like the other girls.”


18. Boards of Canada – Tomorrow’s Harvest

I usually admire a photo if viewing it makes me imagine I am somewhere in the picture.  This album cover photo invites me in.


19. Waxahatchee – Cerulean Salt

This underwater album cover seems fitting since Katie Crutchfield named her band after a lake near her parents’ house in Alabama.


20. The Flaming Lips –  The Terror

Another photo that invites you in.  Is he in a field or on the beach?



3 thoughts on “Best Album Covers of 2013

  1. First!

    My favorite is the first one by The National. Although the DJ Koze cover is pretty awesome.

    Posted by Sean | December 13, 2013, 2:00 am
  2. My favorite is DJ Koze. I am just wild about the lack of front legs on that caribou! It is just cool and that is my #1. I am impressed with this one.

    I also am wild about Esben and the Witch. I can stare at that one for a while! That is my 2nd favorite.

    The National is my 3rd choice. It would have been 1st, except the floor tile doesn’t match from the mirror image. It is a really cool piece, however…

    Posted by Chris Bell | December 14, 2013, 6:17 am
  3. Second!
    You should research how “Le ravissement de Frank N. Stein” relates to the novel “Le ravissement de Lol V. Stein.” I’m interested to know if the video echoes the book. 🙂

    Posted by BJ | December 14, 2013, 8:54 am

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