I confess I was still into the whole dandy/pirate thing when I first heard this album and it changed the way I thought about music. There was none of the chart hits, rumbling drumming and pseudo Native American chanting here, but a stark, post-punk, art-school inventiveness, loaded with knowing lyrics, innuendo and borderline obscenity. I loved it.
The cover was minimal, slick and tightly composed, with strictly alighted type (Renner’s Futura in case you were wondering – there are lots of references to Futurism in the lyrics) and high contrast black and white photography.
I still listen to this on MP3 along with most of the other material he released at this time (just a few singles), and it still gives me the same enjoyment now as it did then. It has been a pleasure handling the vinyl again and taking the time to read the sleeve notes, something I have rarely done with CD’s.
Sleevage Sunday is where I share selections from my old but recently rediscovered vinyl collection. Music has always been an important part of my life, but so was the packaging. In my formative years I would carefully study every inch of the cover, read every sleevenote, credit and publishing blurb so that the visual qualities of these records became intrinsically linked with the music, so that even now when I hear an old song I also get the imagery too! Alas, much of this will fall upon younger heads whose only visual link with their music is the tiny thumbnail on their iPod…
I am not judging any of these covers – some are great, some are really bad, and others just are. These are simply the images of my youth.