Overall great work by Dutch artist and graphic designer Graphic Surgery, with a signature style, obviously influenced by Bauhaus/De Stijl/Graffiti… He’s a buddy of Erosie and kinda next door to Delta INC, as he is also making artwork for the Delsin Records family. Have a look!
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Archive for the 'Musicdesign' Category
London radio station and label Rinse is becoming a grown-up and celebrates its 18th birthday. Our JB. friends, chief designer Give Up Art and photographer Shaun Bloodworth have been responsible for the straight and clear visual language during the last years. Rinse started a series of short films in the run up to the 18th birthday weekend. Here is the landmark of 2006 featuring Stuart (Give Up Art).
My constant companion through life Dinosaur Jr. (I wouldn’t have become the same person without them…) will release their new record I Bet on Sky this year in September. The sweet cover artwork comes from Travis Millard, artist/illustrator and publisher of Fudge Factory Comics, living and working somewhere in the hills of LA. That’s how Fecal Face perfectly rounds it up: “Great dude. Great music. Great art = a healthy combo of greatness…”
Last Friday was J Dilla day: Jay Dee aka J Dilla aka James Yancey, who passed away on the morning of February 10th, 2006 at the age of 32, had suffered from an incurable blood disease and was diagnosed with lupus. He left behind an incredible body of work, an amazing artist whose music you can rediscover at any time, in all these years to come. Stones Throw reissued his little known LP “Ruff Draft” in 2007 for the first time. The original has been released on vinyl only in 2003, and now, there is another reissue, the “Ruff Draft” instrumentals. We love it!
Erosie — the dutch artist, who has its roots in Graffiti, does all the artwork for Martyn’s 3024 label. Here is a selection of recent 12″ sleeve designs with wild patterns and lots of colors. It has a recognizable signature style of Erosie’s art and also as 3024 releases. His large scale mural he painted on a huge wall in Poland also graced the recent cover of Martyn’s LP Ghost People for Brainfeeder.
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Some music for the beginning of January. Just received the upcoming release on Lucky Me by Machinedrum, who released his amazing LP on Planet Mu in 2011 (on my birthday!). SXLND is modern Housemusic with that certain UK touch to it. Travis Stewart wrote these tunes in the Brooklyn summer of 2010, now powered up and engineered for 2012, cheering up these cold rainy days! The 12” EP comes with a cut-out Geisha inner sleeve, but I could not find the info on who made the artwork. Nice idea! Oh, and the download card which comes with the vinyl includes a Scuba remix.
To Our Disco (Design) Friends is back. It took over a year, now I got #06 ready. But I won’t complain about lost time… I am having a closer look at releases from the past months (oh, one record is making a time travel, can you spot it?) that have been impressive, some more musically, some graphically. There are more, but keeping me motivated and you curious for the next round.
Vinyl! No second hand digital information, something real with that I can foster my deep relationship to good sound and great design, something tangible. Here are a few exapmles by FaltyDL, Synkro, Mark Ernestus & Konono No. 1, Theo Parrish, Sepalcure, Martyn and … just have a look below. I also included a few links to their music. Also, I hope that I have set the right credits for the graphical work. Support these artist if you like their music/work! Buy it!
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The new Floating Points double 12″ is coming out and it looks more than nice. It’s a collaborative EP between Sam Shepherd (Floating Points) and his friend Will Hunt. ” ‘Shadows’ introduces a Max/MSP patch (graphical environment for real-time processing) designed by Hunt which studies drum machine and synthesizer activity to generate visuals in real-time.” Musically, you can expect the Floating Points signature sound with jazz/funk elements and rough beat storms, but also exploring more the ambient spheres. Coming along in a gatefold sleeve with nice artwork, apparently showing an excerpt of the visuals. Sweet!
The concert of Sufjan Stevens in Berlin last Saturday has been my most enlightening moment in a long time. Really, I can’t remember last time a concert had to offer this kind of seriousness, deepness, vulnerability, fun, bliss and cheerfulness. Sufjan is a great songwriter, a personality with his unbelievably charming appearance. He played in a huge theatre/concert hall (Admiralspalast) with his band, consisting of ten people to perform his very dense and pompous music. All people were filled with happiness in the end after a two and a half hours show.
It was not only his music and the band (especially the two backing vocalists and dancing girls that I fell in love with…), but the amazing light show and the video animations by Deborah Johnson of Candystations (watch the video above!). All these components together made it a deeply impressive experience. Neon lights, shreds of paper, balloons … and Sufjan’s voice over the piano. Uh!
There are some tunes that are making us happy at the moment, making us relax or pretty much be wild. FaltyDL, Roksa & Untold, Doc Daneeka … It’s about time again to show some of their visual treatments in our favoured column To Our Disco (Design) Friends. Here is a small collection of recent and not so recent releases. There is even more stuff, I can’t complain about good music these days. Listening to ‘Klavierwerke’ by James Blake a hundred times a day, then switch over to a track like ‘Croydon House’ by Pinch, what else do I need? I am having some good times! So I hope to get part #06 out pretty soon. I have to visit Hardwax one more time, take some more pics, turn the music loud … yes, that makes sense. First of all, here is #05:
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Here it is, our Disco Design #04. No more announcement is needed, we’ve been saying much about Give Up Art in the past few days. Now it’s the turn of Stuart Hammersley to show his really great selection he did exclusively for us, mainly of old vinyls somewhere way down South. Brilliant!
Stuart: “You’ve featured a few of my most recent purchases in your last column actually (The Virgo LP, Ramadanman ‘Work Them’, and that Falty DL ep). So, rather than talk about really new dubstep/post-garage/funky whatever tunes I decided to highlight a few of my recent old vinyl finds from my trip to Sonar that I think people should check out.
Barcelona has some brilliant little second-hand vinyl shops. Seems like there’s one hidden away in every little alleyway. I found some great stuff there… from a music and design point of view.”
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Big drum roll for the next musicdesign column! Within the next days, To Our Disco (Design) Friends #04 is coming from Give Up Art, the hyperactive design studio from London that has been brilliantly featured in the recent issue of XLR8R Magazine (p.74-81). We’ve been talking about this ace studio a couple of times. Stuart — founder and creative head of GUA, and a super nice guy by the way — selected some finds he recently spotted somewhere in the dusty crates of Barcelona during his stay for the Sonar festival. Just got it in my inbox, so be well prepared, some real highlights in there. A full feature about the works of Give Up Art and the people behind it, soon on JB. — online and, yeah… on printed paper!
Inspired and powered by the current issue of Eye Magazine — #76, their Music Design Special Issue, a new part of our musicdesgin column had to be done once again. And after a couple of weeks, I finally managed to pick up some records from my shelf at Hardwax that had been waiting there for a while. So I have some newer stuff here plus two older examples that have already been in my collection, but old or new, that doesn’t matter anyway. Some great artworks, nice selection of colors in some of the designs or nice details like a piece of cloth on a stamped paper sleeve. And of course: some really stunning tunes! Have a look and listen as I included a few soundfiles.
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A while ago, we at JB. started to take a closer look at musicdesign with a new column, “To Our Disco (Design) Friends”. In the future I try to follow this path more continously as there are a lot of examples, whether new or already totally dusty on my record shelves… I don’t do this for nostalgic reasons. I still believe in this artform, especially music on vinyl and their associated designs, things with a certain quality and value. The role of the designer or artists who created record sleeves some decades ago might have been more regarded, had recieved some more attention. But looking at todays artworks, I am finding tons of great ideas and designs, there are still a lot of people out there that continue the legacy of a Blue Note cover for example.
One of these outstanding music designers is the London graphic artist Stuart Hammersly of Give Up Art. He is the visual epicenter of dubstep or electronic music from England in the broadest sense. The next part of this column will be a small selection of records by him and I am really excited about, what kind of goodness Stuart will choose. Looking forward to this!
Eye Magazine #76 just released their “Music Design Special Issue” with a bunch of great art from iconic covers that defined new eras to current examples. If you are into the visual goodness of your music, take a first glance at the issue here and then go get a copy (or step by at doyoureadme?! if in Berlin). This is a must for all the music lovers!
This record was supposed to be in the last part of our design column To Our Disco (Design) Friends #02. But as it had to be photographed properly, it gets delivered with an extra post. The label Numbers from Glasgow would actually fill a bunch of posts for this category, because they release some special music, some extraordinary graphic design plus they do care for music being pressed on vinyl.
One-sided pressings of tunes are always a bit prodigal, mostly an extremely consequent decision. Deadboy’s “If U Want Me” is such an example, a track that was flying around for while, could be heard in a couple of DJ mixes or radio shows, merging nowadays funk of UK Garage sounds with a bit of early Detroit Techno. The vinyl has sold out of distribution in one day. The space of the b-side is used here for a beautiful etching, a typographical illustration courtesy of German illustrator Powl Goudsmit. Before I expand on what this amazing label Numbers is all capable of — I consider to do that soonish, have a look at this, they have even been featured on The Guardian lately — I focus on the laser etching of the Deadboy 12″. Etchings on records are commonly used for text or hidden information in the run out grooves for which I should create another column here — “Auslaufrillentexte”. Anybody knows, where or precisely from which run out groove the headline of this post comes from? Only one tip: the record is also british.
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To Our Disco (Design) Friends #02
The story continues … But before I go on, here are some infos on the first column about the graphical world of Errorsmith, MMM, Smith’n'Hack and Soundsteram/Soundhack. All artworks of Errorsmith records were done by Tasche. Fiedel, the Berghain resident and half of MMM, made the stamps for the MMM labels and all drawings and logotypes for the Soundhack/Soundstream releases. For the new MMM release, he used graphics from a scientific youth contest called Messe der Meister von Morgen in the former GDR, which is also the name giver of MMM.
There is so much good music around these days and it feels that the possibilities to find wether fresh and unheard sound or old familiar tunes being repressed have never been so easy. With all these releases, a lot of good visual ideas come along, good graphic design or just nice packaging. I have been buying a lot of records at Hardwax during the last weeks, enjoyed the music very much and found some interesting and fresh approaches on graphics. I chose some of the vinyls and took some quick shots with my fancy phone, in a sense of reviewing them visually.
The picture on top of that article is a detail of the album/12″ artwork for UK Funky artist Roska by the brilliant designers of GiveUpArt from London, who did a bunch of great design works for the music industry such as Tempa, FWD>> or RinseFM or a photo book documenting the LA underground music scene — L.A. Dope.
Below are the examples of my recently bought vinyls, designed by different artists. As soon as I find out these craftsmen, I will add them to the captions plus some links. All of the music is great, too!
Please leave a note in the comments if you know someone of the creators/designers. Thanks!
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This is a good moment to start a new column. The relation of music and design, or music and art is an important ingredient of JB. I would like to share some favourite cover designs, details on label stickers of dance records or the spine of a sleeve, stamped white labels or elaborate silk screen printed record sleeves and everything that the world of the 12″ art has to offer and is relevant to me or the bunch of guest columnists, that will soon add some spice to this category.
To Our Disco (Design) Friends #01
Today is the 1st anniversary of the conspiratorial music night of Hard Wax called Wax Treatment (check the superb podcast) which is held monthly at the nice venue Horst Krzbrg, Berlin. My friend Erik Errorsmith Wiegand will be showcasing a liveact of his MMM project, together with Fiedel. And unfortunately I cannot attend which leads me to the first selection of designs that are all from this small befriended collective. All from Berlin: Smith’n'Hack, Errorsmith, MMM, Soundstream … As the design is pure minimalism I refuse to talk about it. The music tells the story, and it always had and still has such an impact on me, inspiring and ground breaking dance music. I will add some background information with the next post in this series.
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