From the late ’90s to the late ’00s, electro-rock outfit Gerling made their mark on the Australian music scene – not just with their music, but their album covers as well. From the blood-smeared disco ball of Bad Blood, to the almost western-in-space inspired collage of 4, their album covers – designed by drummer Paul Towner and frontman Darren Cross – were an extension of the band and only added to their artistic merit.
Gerling went on hiatus in 2007, but Towner, who works under the name Dead Galaxy, has continued producing album covers even without a band to make them for (although Decoder Ring and Dappled Cities have utilized his skills in recent years). His latest project, Brain Washed: 100 Album Covers of the Future, features vinyl-sized collages accompanied by names for fictitious albums such as Brain Washed Kid Busking on Hologram Street and Sad Wires Lead Into My Heart Skull… End, Loved Persists. They hint at an artist too restless to wait for commissions, and too prolific to wait for actual music to be written.
Normally we’d say such a project is an homage to disappearing art form, but with vinyl outselling digitally purchased music in the U.K., and with a general upturn in vinyl sales in other parts of the world, perhaps album cover design isn’t a dying art after all.