Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Gone Country!

I realized the other day that I've not yet written anything about country music yet! While doing some research, I noticed that the album covers of this genre typically feature a portrait of the artist along with their name and the album title. Although this does work well for some artists, mostly Johnny Cash, it's still so typical. Seriously, do a search for country music album covers, and that's all you'll find! Still, I figured that there has to be something else out there! A country cover that's not so cookie-cutter. This might be difficult.

At last, here it is! Neil Young is a Canadian artist who walks a fine line between the rock and country genres. Maybe that's why his album covers are more intriguing, who knows? The first cover that I found to be quite original was the one for Silver and Gold. As it turns out, the picture on this cover was actually shot with a camera from a Game Boy, hence the pixelation. It seems to be a human figure on the cover, but the graphic treatment is really what sets this one apart from the rest.

The second cover that caught my eye was the one for Greendale. The style of the hand drawn illustration is very consistent and well executed. It comes across as a bird's eye view but upon closer observation, you can see that the perspective is completely off. The balance is also quite interesting. The left hand side of the cityscape seems densely populated whereas the right has been sparsely filled. Given Young's position on the environment, this could indeed be a direct reference to that particular theme. In fact, most of the tracks featured on this album address such issues. Perhaps what may have once been a lush forest was destroyed and taken over by industrialization. Regardless, this cover is definitely food for thought!

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