Album Art: AFI – The Art of Drowning

I’m going to start a new section on the blog and talk about some album art that I think deserves to be written about (even if it’s poorly written and by me). Hopefully some of these posts will bring up albums and artwork we forgot about, never forgot, or have a special place in our hearts for. (Too cheesy?)

I know we are in the digital age where no one buys physical records anymore (if you buy music at all), album art has been shrunken down to a few pixels, and the idea of good packaging is still only relevant to a few labels and artists, but for me the album art is just as important as the music. Don’t get me wrong, you can have a great album with bad album art but having great album art can help sell records, draw people in, and influence what makes a great record. Also, great album art and great songs make for the best combination. Can we agree on that?

I’m going in no specific order other than grabbing CDs off of my shelf and talking about them. Our first album is AFI “The Art of Drowning”.

People are going to hate me for this one. I don’t like this cover very much. But I used to. I used to be obsessed with this album and it’s artwork. I think everyone I knew was obsessed with this album and it’s artwork. People got really, really intense about AFI. I was. When I first got this album it was one of the ones that made me want to put out my bands music with great art. I think I drew this album cover in my notes once a week in high school. When I say I don’t like the art, it’s not that I think the art is bad, it’s just not what I’m into anymore. The packaging itself is great. It’s your standard cd booklet in a jewel case but what’s great about it is the interior booklet. Pages filled with great illustrations and lyrics. To a young kid listening to music (I used to listen to music more passionately when I was younger, you know, sitting by your boom box with booklet in hand, repeating every song while reading every lyric…) you couldn’t ask for more. F seeing photos of the band, having unique illustrations layered throughout the pages sold it for me. Most punk bands were doing the black and white punk live shots and AFI was relying on great artwork. Even with Black Sails and Shut Your Mouth (see below) AFI was onto something with it’s use of illustration.

The artwork to me works well because it reminds me a lot of Tim Burton and is very cartoony and themed. And don’t hate me for this AFI fans, I think this is the CD where AFI got kind of cartoony and gimmicky. Aesthetically and musically. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, but coming from Black Sails and how really punk almost hardcore that album was to how dramatic “The Art of Drowning” was I think the artwork is an appropriate fit.

And with all that being said, this record and it’s art was definitely a big influence on me growing up.

Japan Day 4

More photos from my trip to Japan with Crowd Deterrent… we had a long drive to the show so we’ll start there.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Unloading.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Tats.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Waiting on sound check.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
The Guerilla Crows bassist has awesome style.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Dr.Feelgood sings for Guerilla Crows. They rule.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Walking around.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Backstage passes.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Numb!

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Azi.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Creepout!

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Crowd Deterrent!

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Rob and a kid who apparently dug the poster I did.

Japan Day 4 - 2012
Group.

Japan Day 3

Some more photos from my trip to Japan with Crowd Deterrent. Let’s begin.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Crab building.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
The guys. I can’t thank them enough for driving us around, helping us order food and figure out everything.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Dustin warming up before the show. Sound checks are like… 7 hours before the show. Way different from the normal American shows. You know, where the bands all show up a half hour late.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
I don’t know for sure but I don’t think this guy is a real member…

Japan Day 3 - 2012

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Super racist Mickey Mouse shirt. “Baby, Yo, Baby, Yo, Good To Go”

Japan Day 3 - 2012
I really wanted this thing.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Store

Japan Day 3 - 2012
You go girl.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
The group in front of a restaurant.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Yohei and Dustin.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Me and Azi.

Japan Day 3 - 2012

Show gathering.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
The show.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
The lead singer of SAND owns a boutique shop “After Base”

Japan Day 3 - 2012
We met this guy… hm.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Creepout.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Crowd Deterrent.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Sand.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
The lead singer of Sand threw an after-party after the show. He piled us up with delicious food.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
The back room.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
The front room.

Japan Day 3 - 2012
Me and Dr.Feelgood.

Japan – Day 1

Pictures from Day 1 of my trip to Japan with Crowd Deterrent. We drove six hours to Chicago, flew 5 hours to Los Angeles, flew 12 hours to Tokyo.Japan Day 1
We arrive.

Japan Day 1
Vending machines are a hit.

Japan Day 1
We crashed at MerchDig Headquarters.

Japan Day 1

Japan Day 1
Hanging out before band practice.

Japan Day 1
Band practice with fill in drummer Pink Mosh.

Japan Day 1
Dinner with Tats.

Japan Day 1
My first meal in Japan… lame, I know. I couldn’t resist…

Japan Day 1
Tats and Pink Mosh

Japan Day 1
Sleep

Certain Death

This video has been a long time in the making. What originally started out as a 30 second teaser for the new Crowd Deterrent album turned into a full blown music video. The ideas behind the video were taken from various horror/slasher movies and compiled into one. Dead Art Inc. did all the effects and did a fantastic job. We hope you are entertained. Beware.

Dog Days – Via Dolorosa

We’ve been busy recording the album and I just finished up the album art for the first Dog Days (and Skies Bleed Black) full length “Via Dolorosa”. Here’s the cover and a little online promotional image. The rest of the artwork will be released when the album drops.

Dog Days - Via Dolorosa

Photobucket