Anyone that used to or still buys vinyl albums knows that packaging is a big deal. Interesting packaging has led to more sales than the record industry might admit just based on a cool looking graphic and some great liner notes. That said, sometimes an artist goes the extra mile to present an album packaged in an extraordinary way. Here are 5 over-the-top album packaging ideas that might not have increased sales, but they sure are cool.
Lemon Jelly – Soft/Rock: This London-based EDM duo decided that it would best to release their album in a hand-stitched segment of real denim jeans (see the graphic on the right). That’s unusual enough, but they then went a step further by placing an actual condom in the pocket too.
Blood Duster – Kvit: This one is pretty weird. The album was billed as “The album they don’t want you to hear,” since all copies of the record where made unplayable by scratching the hell out of them as soon as they were mastered.
The Durutti Column – The Return Of The Durutti Column: The sleeve of this record is made of course sandpaper. Why, you might ask? In order to ruin the sleeves of the records placed next to it, of course.
Jack White – Lazertto Ultra LP: There are a ton of interesting and unique things about this record, from double grooves that play different intros to songs, one side playing from the inside out rather than the standard outside in, and a hidden song on the inside label of the record. One of the cooler things is that there’s an etched hologram of an angel that spins with the record (see the video below).
Spiritualized – Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space: This one is pretty crazy. The album artwork was designed to look like a box of medication, even with ‘dosage’ recommendations listed on the outside. The band then took this theme to a new level on the special edition of the release, with each song placed on its own 3 inch disc that was blister-packed to look like a sheet of pills. You had to pop the disc “pill” from the pack in order to listen to it.
These ideas cost loads of extra money that comes out of the artist’s pocket in the end. While they may not contribute to the sales of a record in a big way, there’s a lot of promo value in them, and it’s something that we’re talking about years later. Obviously, this is one of the cool things that streaming is missing.
For more crazy album packaging ideas, check out this article where the above came from.