"A crystal ball of record covers from my private collection. Enjoy!"
Archive / matmaitland.com / bigactive.com

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Light Of The World / Light Of The World (1979) Credits unknown.

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Alice Street Gang / Bahia (1976)

I think this has just become my favourite record cover ever. It’s airbrushed but not in the usual precise 80’s way, it’s much more loose and painterly which gives it a real charm, infact maybe parts of it are actually painted. The image itself is really cinematic in the way it depicts the scene, you want to know what the characters are planning, I particularly like the guys on the right - superbad. 

Oh and I forgot to mention the neon typography! 

Roxy Music / Same Old Scene (1980)

Often single covers are less known than album covers, they are much less permanent somehow. This will explain why I only recently came across this one. It goes without saying what a great purveyor of style Bryan Ferry is, he’s never really put a foot wrong when it comes to, not only his own personal style, but also all of the sleeve art for Roxy Music and his solo career. This single sleeve is no exception, I thought I’d share it for those of you who hadn’t seen it. It’s a theme which Ferry returned to and re-interpreted on his later Boys & Girls album cover. (Mat Maitland, Leopard Tree Dream)

Dance People / Fly Away (1979) Photography by Bob Carlos Clark.

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Madleen Kane / Cheri (1979) Illustration by Lise Bijl and Hélene Majera.

This sleeve is a really special, I don’t think I’ve ever seen one like it, this style of painting on a record sleeve. It could be a book cover, it’s sort of a combination of a pulp novel and a romantic love story. Kind of a Mills & Boons Femme Fatale. You could fall in love with her but she might kill you! (Mat Maitland, Leopard Tree Dream)

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Grace Jones / Do Or Die (1978) Photography by Francis Ing.

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Diana Ross / Baby It’s Me (1977)

Art Direction & Design by David Larkham. Photography by Skrebneski. Tinting by Larry Dupont. This cover was shot by fashion photographer Victor Skrebneski. I recently discovered it was originally a black and white image that’s been hand coloured. You’d never know, it’s perfect. The shot itself is pretty modern for 1977, not just the look of the shot but the idea of showing the photo studio/fashion shoot. It makes Ross seem part of that world but totally out of reach to us. 

Chinatown / Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (1974) Artwork by Jim Pearsall. I’ve always loved the poster art for Chinatown, somehow it reminds me of the first edition cover of The Great Gatsby, probably because of the face and period. 

Roy Buchanan / You’re Not Alone (1978) Illustration by Alex Ebel. Art Direction by Bob Defrin. Design by Lynn Dreese Breslin.

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Robert Palmer / Secrets (1978) Art Direction and Photography by Graham Hughes. Robert Palmer had some great early covers, not to mention his iconic video for Addicted To Love. I never cared much for his music though. Anyway, this is a great one, like a cross between Man Ray and Bowie’s Scary Monsters cover. Unbelievably it’s yet another sleeve from 1978. (Mat Maitland, Leopard Tree Dream)

The Four Seasons / Who Loves You (1975) Design by Vigon Nahas Vigon. Photography by Chris Callis and Dean Cade.

Alan Price / Between Today And Yesterday (1974) Design by Seabrook Graves Aslett. Illustration by Barbara Brunsdon.  

Dick Powell In Hollywood 1933-1935 Cover art designed by Nereus Bell. Illustration by George Telo.

Ian Matthews / Stealin’ Home (1978) Photography by Steve Hiett. Design by Chris Moore and Michael Munday. I saw this one when I was in Brussels a while ago and Instagrammed it, then I couldn’t get it out of my head so I went all the way back to buy it. It’s a beautiful photograph and I appreciate that they put it on the cover. Having been designing record sleeves for so long now I know how rare it is to use such a subtle and enigmatic image. I can’t place where it was taken, could be Paris or London.

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The Section / Fork It Over (1977) Art Direction by Roy Kohara. Illustration by Dave Willardson & Star Studios