Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Scorpions - Virgin Killer (original cover) (1976)

This cover stands head and shoulders above any I've ever seen. It's in such bad taste as to render the cover difficult to even look at. It plays off of societal taboos in a way that's crass and exploitative in the worst possible sense. It features a naked preteen posing suggestively with a broken glass starburst over her genitals. My friends, this is Virgin Killer.

How does an album cover like this come about? Apparently, the band's record label asked for a shocking cover, and they sure as hell got one. They got one so bad that even the band themselves started to have second thoughts about what they had done. The fact that the cover got pulled and replaced with a generic group photo of the band suggests that the record label figured that out perhaps just a tad too late.

So congratulations to you, Scorpions. You somehow managed to make the worst album cover ever. I hope you're proud of yourselves.

Bay City Rollers - Rock 'n' Roll Love Letter (1976)

Featuring quite possibly the ugliest group of teen heartthrobs ever. Not only do I resent their horrible faces, I also resent that they attempted to do the 80s feathered hair look about four years before the 80s actually began. Their outfits, of course, are too horrible to even mention.

Birth Control - Operation (1971)

Tying in with the previous album cover of theirs that I've covered, if you don't use birth control, apparently a giant grasshopper will, uh, eat a bunch of babies for some poorly-defined reason. I'm not sure if this is a step up from a dayglo fetus in a dumpster yet or not, but at least you can give these guys credit for sticking to a theme. Even when it feels like their theme was inspired by taking a shitload of drugs.

Anna Russell - In Darkest Africa

I like how she goes for the old-school colonialist approach to how those horrible African savages would treat such an upstanding, white British woman such as herself, then completely half-asses it by making them wear those bizarre tartan skirts. I mean jesus, if you're going to be stereotypical, at least get your fucking stereotypes right.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

The Reverend Gusta Booker - The Day Death Died!!! (1983)

You can never use too many exclamation points!!! This goes double if you're making profoundly nonsensical statements!!! They lend your album's title that touch of class and elegance that it needs to make people want to listen to it!!! It's great!!!

Jim Post - I Love My Life (1978)

I don't know, Jim, something about that thousand-yard stare and sour look on your face make me think you're deluding yourself. You want to come across as being sexy, I'm sure, but you can't bring yourself to go that extra mile, can you Jim? You simply can't reconcile your desires with what you already know about your sad, horrible little life, can you? Let's face it, Jim; you don't love anything. You just want to die.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Don & Seymour - Don & Seymour

The look of rage on Don's face in this image is pretty stunning. "So I'm playing guitar with a sock puppet. YOU GOT A FUCKIN' PROBLEM WITH THAT, ASSHOLE?!" Given Seymour's typically jolly appearance (being a puppet and all), what's coming to mind is a very surreal, musical version of good cop, bad cop, where Seymour happily serenades you and cracks jokes and Don angrily cracks the guitar over your head and dumps your body in a drainage ditch.

(As the watermark mentions, this is an image from Bizarre Records, a bunch of guys who've been doing this way longer than I have, and even partially inspired me to start this.)

Ray Thornley - Ray Thornley Entertains, Vol. 1

For supposedly entertaining others, Ray looks extremely non-plussed. His slight sneer and uncomfortable body language suggest that he really doesn't give a rat's ass about any of the people he's entertaining, and to be quite frank he probably hates what he does from an aesthetic standpoint. Given the bizarre electronics on his organ, it's entirely possible that he doesn't even play the organ himself, choosing instead to merely program the machine to do his bidding, causing the sham that is his pathetic existence to be revealed even further. But hey, recommendations from The Organist don't come every day, so I suppose you have to do what you have to do.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Tony Tee - Time to Get Physical (1988)

I really don't know what's more pathetic here; the fact that Tony clearly needs the two huge guys to hold up his barbell for him (which isn't even that heavy by the looks of it) or the fact that the woman in the weird spandex/technicolor diaper arrangement looks like she's about to kick Tony's ass.If rap is a game designed to make its participants seem as masculine as possible, Tony has lost. Big time.

Mylon LeFevre - Weak at the Knees (1977)

You know, the term "fashion disaster" doesn't seem nearly damning enough in this instance. This guy's outfit is so outrageously bad that it seems like it needs a new term to describe it. Maybe we should start calling extreme cases like this one "fashion holocausts." It's impossible to get too hyperbolic with this outfit, after all.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

XXX Maniak - Harvesting the Cunt Nectar (2004)

You know, I don't usually expect much from grindcore and its variants when it comes to album covers. They're gory, stupid, and attempt to shock the viewer with whatever means necessary. This, however, seems pretty low even for the genre. I mean, come on, gouging out a woman's vaginal area with a shovel? The random sexual organs just scattered around in the frame for who-knows-what reason? Even the name feels kind of forced in its "outrageousness." And metal fans wonder why they're often considered socially-maladjusted deviants.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The Sportsmen Quartet - Barbershop Ballads

If they're so world-famous, why can't they grow their own moustaches? I mean come on, those things are faker than a stripper's chest. Then again, I'm not sure that the guy in the blue sweater has even hit puberty, so it could be a conscious decision.

I love how the guy in the back isn't even attempting to sing, he's just mugging for the camera for all he's worth. It's as if he knows his 15 minutes of fame are almost up, so he might as well get the most bang for his buck.

Also, is it just me or does the woman in the barber's chair look suspiciously like "Tina" from the Broad Minded cover? Were attractive women in such short supply in the late 50s that they had to be shared across album covers?

Tom Jones - a-Tom-ic Jones (1966)

If Soulja Slim was implying that he was about to go World War III on our asses in the name of givin' it to us raw, Tom Jones is implying that he can start a nuclear holocaust just by letting loose with his wonderfully rich Welsh baritone if he so chooses. The album cover arms race has begun!

Buffalo - Only Want You for Your Body (1974)

While I'm pretty sure the album title/cover combo are meant to work as a joke, this still leaves me with a photo of a very pasty white fat... um, thing all suited up for some S&M action in a dungeon somewhere. Maybe I'm a bit too square, but I don't find this to be very effective album cover material. I mean, at least make it so I can figure out the gender of whatever it is that's being tied up next time.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

David and Rhonda Bean - Somethins Happened to Daddy

What's happened to daddy, Rhonda, is that he bought a cheap suit that's somehow made him think that he's wealthier than he actually is, if we can believe the unbelievably awful song title advertised here. He also may be suffering from bee sting allergies given the puffiness of his face. I'd also rather not speculate about why the microphone you happen to be holding looks vaguely like a vibrator.

The Cure - The Cure (2004)

You know, when the best artwork you can produce for your album is something that your 5 year old drew, you might want to reconsider things a bit.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Billy Devroe - Broad Minded

Possible thoughts going through Billy Devroe's head on this album cover:
1) "Man, don't tell me that ditzy dame Tina's going to try to scare me by sneaking up on me again. When's she going to learn that it never works?"
2) "Aw fuck, I killed another one. I really hope the judge lets me off light this time."
3) "Man, all of these girls and I'm not attracted to a single one. I really oughta come out of the closet."
4) No thoughts are actually going through his head. This is just how he looks whenever he drinks himself into a stupor.

Leo Sayer - Endless Flight (1976)

You know, I could remake this album cover with Richard Simmons and a trebuchet and get the added bonus of being able to actually see the impact at the end. With Leo Sayer, I can only pretend, and that's not nearly as entertaining.

Limp Bizkit - Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water (2000)

You know, complaining about Limp Bizkit being stupid and juvenile is kind of like complaining about dogs barking and licking themselves. Hell, making fun of Fred Durst is kind of like making fun of developmentally disabled kids in that it's entirely too easy and almost meanspirited. However, given that most kids in a special ed class would probably know better than to release an album cover based around such a horribly juvenile phrase and somehow Fred Durst DIDN'T, well, I think that deserves some mention after all. Good old Fred. May you one day be able to handle the horrors of the third grade.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Adrian - One Step into the Uncertain (1989)

With this one, you can tell that the artist completely blew their artistic load on the whatever-it-is that's assailing my favorite norse rock god Val Hallen, then completely forgot about drawing, well, anything else at all. I can hear the excuses now: "Well, uh, the battle is taking place on a distant world enshrouded by blue fog... and no, those aren't deformed marshmallows, they're eggs. Seriously."

The goofy pose is also great. It makes it look like Val has something really great in his hands and the monster is trying desperately to look over his shoulder and see what it is.

Circle Jerks - Golden Shower of Hits (1983)

If there's one thing more tiring than having a joke beat over your head, it's having the joke beat over your head when it isn't even that funny to begin with. Oh ha ha, the gold records are in the urinal due to their similarity in color to urine which is playing off the album title. Plus they're being pissed on to double up the album title hilarity! Oh what a laugh! I could just die!

Mario Rossi - Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf

I don't quite recall the portion of Peter and the Wolf where a middle-aged soccer mom in a frumpy black dress shoots the wolf, has it stuffed, then attempts the world's most inept suicide by shooting. Must've missed that part.

The Murk Family - Love for All Seasons

Mom had a shitload of floral print fabric on hand and, god damn it, she was going to use it all! I think even the dad's shirt is made out of the stuff. I guess it could've been worse and she could've similarly dressed up the brother (though she might've anyway since I can't get a good look on that shirt of his), horse, and dog, but I think she finally figured out that there's more important things to do after a nuclear holocaust has hit than making sure everybody's clothes match.

Elliot Lawrence - Music for Trapping (Tender, That Is)

Yeah I think I'd have that sort of expression on my face too if I discovered that the guy I was dating was a PSYCHOTIC SERIAL KILLER HELL-BENT ON BEHEADING ME AND STICKING ME ON THE WALL LIKE SOME SICK TROPHY. I bet if you look in his closet he already has most of his woman-skin suit ready too.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Jerry Falwell - Where Are the Dead?

Unless the question in the title is rhetorical, this has to be one of the stupidest fucking album covers I've ever seen.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Aaron Carter - Crazy Little Party Girl (1998)

The underaged crotch shot that absolutely nobody needed to see. It gives me a sneaking suspicion that Aaron Carter actually isn't being marketed to preteen girls at all but rather NAMBLA.

The Gospel Tidings - Get Away Satan

These people are so collectively ugly that I'm sure Satan wouldn't want anything to do with them in the first place. "Send these guys to hell? Are you nuts? These people think avocado green actually looks good on them! They're too stupid to be evil! And stop bothering me about tempting the McKeithens. They ain't cutting it either."

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Barry Louis Polisar - I Eat Kids and Other Songs for Rebellious Children (1975)

You can't get much better than the look of abject terror on the kids' face. It's as if someone just told the kid what the name of the album was.

The McKeithens - The McKiethen's

While the McKeithens as a whole are an ugly, ugly family and I could describe the flaws of each for possibly two or three pages, what concerns me most is the mother's hair. It looks terrifyingly unreal, almost as if some space alien replaced her hair with an egg sac and in a few minutes a bunch of space parasites are going to burst from it and latch themselves onto her extremely mannish daughter, or maybe the grinning idiot in the back.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Dr. Alimantado - Best Dressed Chicken in Town (1978)

Somebody needs to tell this chicken that it's generally a good idea to check if your fly is zipped before posing for an album cover.

Dean Martin - Happiness is Dean Martin (1962)


Actually what really makes this cover is Dean's bemused expression. "Huh, would you look at that. This doll just started puking up pea soup all over the place and calling my mother a whore. I must be having a really bad case of the DTs again."

Incredible Hog - Incredible Hog (1973)

Boy there's nothing I like more than a female pig with several sets of human-like breasts, posing provocatively. I wonder if this album cover can be blamed for creating furries.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Brainstorm - Smile a While (1972)

After this, I'm pretty sure I'll never be able to smile again.

Billy May - Cha Cha! (1960)

OK, we get it, it's a fucking cha-cha album. You don't need to put "cha cha" at the end of every single fucking song title. Jesus christ this is almost as bad as any given polka record.

Aside from the irritating name scheme, I'm trying to figure out just what is up with that dress. If you cover her top half she looks like some sort of weird sea creature, one with a love of gold lamé and pink chiffon. This is to say nothing of Ali Balding and his confused ethnicity outfit. The dog is obviously trying to be the black version of Petey from Our Gang and thus looks the least stupid of everybody on this cover.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Airman!!: United States Air Force Basic Training in Sound


Big Moe - City of Syrup (2000)

Up until now, I never realized that purple drank looked like a really lousy photoshop filter effect. Thankfully, Big Moe saw fit to demonstrate this for me while he was destroying Tokyo. Thanks Big Moe!

Queen - The Miracle (1988)

I'm pretty sure that anything that would result in you being fused together with your fellow bandmates into a gigantic lumbering monster would be less a miracle and more a horrendous nightmare.

The Human League - Reproduction (1979)

"Hey, Bill! Come over! We're having a dance party! Just be sure to bring a few babies to throw on the floor! You wouldn't believe what a great surface they create for dancing! After you crush a few under your heels, it feels like you're flying!"

Monday, May 7, 2007

Captain Hook and his Christian Pirate Crew - Shiver My Timbers!

I really can't blame the vaguely devil-looking guy in the corner for boycotting this whole thing; when I think pirates, I generally think of drinking rum and adventuring, not reading scripture. Hell, they can't even get stereotyped pirate lingo correct for the title; that "my" should clearly be a "me."

I do have to wonder who "Sharkey" is, though, and why he's just as important as the singalongs and the scripture. Is this some long forgotten part of the bible with an emphasis on walking the plank and pieces of eight? "And Sharkey did turn the bilgewater into rum, and let the whole become mutilated so that they could be outfitted with hooks and peg legs. And then Sharkey said unto the masses 'Arr, let's be pillagin' in the name of the Lord, me hearties!'" (Sharkey 3:25)

Scorpions - Moment of Glory (2000)

Scorpions set out to prove that not only did T-Rexes exist, they looked simply FABULOUS!

Mom's Apple Pie - Mom's Apple Pie (original cover) (1972)

This cover looks innocent enough at first, if extremely creepy, but sharp eyes will notice that the apple pie, aside from not looking anything at all like an apple pie, has a clearly defined labia/clitoris. Why the hell a pie would have either of those things is anybody's guess, but it makes me wonder if the people behind the American Pie movies knew about this album cover.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Sharlene Sharp - Rare and Well-Done

"Hello my dear, nice of you to drop by on my steed tonight. I know the doctors say you're not really there, but I can tell you are! You're just very crudely pasted onto this cover is all, kind of like how I think my horse is. But really, aren't we ALL just shoddy photo-collages in this great big world of ours? My flat pants leg thinks so! Anyway, have some booze, it might help you forget just how loud my suit is."

Y Kant Tori Read - Y Kant Tori Read (1988)

The album that Tori Amos would really like everyone to forget about. Given how horribly 80s her outfit looks on this cover, I think I can see part of the reason why, to say nothing of the 5th-grade level scribbles surrounding her. I'm seriously afraid her hair is going to come alive and eat me, if she doesn't use that cutlass first.

Betty Staples - Organ Fantasy

There is a very obvious joke that can be made about this cover regarding its title, but I am a gentleman, so I won't go there.

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Ira North - If I Were a Woman

Looking at Ira, I'm pretty sure I don't want to know what he'd be like as a woman.

Rikk Agnew - Turtle (1992)

Rikk Agnew asks us to consider what a real life Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle would look like. According to Rikk, they would be horribly ugly, angry abominations less prone to spouting outdated Californian surfer lingo and eating pizza and more prone to wanting to bite your fingers off and burn your house down. Truly the stuff of nightmares.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Robbie Basho - The Falconer's Arm I (1967)

Either this album cover features one of the only caucasian Native American asians in existence, or that's the dumbest fucking collection of fashion statements I've ever seen in my life.

Poison - Open Up and Say... Ahh! (original cover) (1988)

If this is meant to be demonic, this is the least threatening demonic presence I've ever seen. It looks like some woman couldn't decide whether she wanted to be a cat, filthy white-trash, or Gene Simmons for Halloween and tried to haphazardly combine qualities of all three.

For some reason or another, this cover was actually banned. I can only hope that it was banned for being almost inconcievably stupid, but given that the 80s was the time of the PMRC I get the feeling that this cover was somehow actually viewed as being a threat, which just makes me feel really, really sad.

Bonnie Prudden - Fitness for Baby and You

a.k.a. "Here's another completely pointless activity you can force your child into to make you feel better about being a housewife with a dead-end life desperately trying to beautify yourself for a husband who probably doesn't give two shits about you and is most likely cheating on you with that cute girl down at the office."

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Almafuerte - Del Entorno (1996)

I'm pretty sure that it's not a smart idea to connote your band's music with stepping in a pile of shit, or anything scatalogical in general, but by this point this seems less shocking for me and more really tiring. There's only so many times you can see shit or shit-like substances on album covers before it starts to get really old really fast.