Art Vinyl compiled a shortlist of 50 covers with help from design and music industry experts and then invited the public to vote on their favourite artwork.
Last year was a triumphant year for vinyl with more than 500 000 LPs sold, according to the British Phonographic Industry. As a result, album artwork in its most effective form is getting more exposure than it has for a long time.
Fittingly, 2013 has produced a wealth of outstanding covers from renowned artists such as Stanley Donwood, Damien Hirst and design firm YES. The shortlist included releases from musicians as big as Elton John, Paul McCartney and Daft Punk.
The top three designs take their inspiration from disparate styles. The White Lies cover is an oil painting from artist Michael Kagan’s series of studies of astronauts. The cover was art-directed by Gerard Saint and Markus Karlsson.
Kagan says, ‘There is a nice cohesiveness between all of the images used and the songs and feel of the album.’
London based designer Paul Jackson’s illustration for the cover of Dan Le Sac and Scroobius Pip’s third album was awarded second place. The design, which shows a panda and a lion vomiting a variety of objects at each other, draws inspiration from the imagery of hardcore bands like Gallows and Cancer Bats.
Leif Podhajsky reached third place with his kaleidoscopic cover for Bonobo’s fifth album The North Borders.
The vinyl release for The North Border’s first single Cirrus, also designed by Podhajsky, notably came with a zoetrope contraption that produced the illusion of motion when played.
This year alone Podhajsky has created album covers for St Lucia, Foals and Mt Kimbie to name a few. The latter of which was awarded 13th place in the top 50.