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music
charles park trilogy poster
charles park trilogy album cover
_what
record sleeve, poster + trailer for the nashville-based band, makeup and vanity set.
_how
telefuture records approached makeup and vanity set with the idea of re-releasing their popular charles park records as a trilogy box set. the moment the project got a green light john delucca, joey ciccoline and ourselves were put to work in tying the overall package together visually.

john was sent a few paragraphs detailing the narrative behind each album. he then started to create a poster that we could divide into three halves, to represent the three parts of the story.

we were asked to create the logo, cover and overall packaging for the record. the logo we made is pretty self-explanatory, but the packaging was a subtler affair. utilizing the bokeh affect often seen in films when the camera is focussing on objects in the foreground, we realized we could represent each part of the trilogy with a different coloured circle. in this way the cover image could say a lot with very little, and each record within the packaging could be differentiated by its own red, blue or brown graphic.

joey was then sent the logo and proceeded to shoot the necessary footage to create the teaser trailer for the trilogy, this clip was the first promotional piece released to the general public. once released the limited edition box set sold out in 2 days, but you can still purchase the album digitally here.
_link
makeupandvanityset.com
_tags
wide
cover
detail
_what
record sleeve for the new york-based band, activator.
_how
activator approached us to handle the sleeve artwork for their eponymous debut album. a dark, brutal, relationship-based thrash metal record, it played into our sensibilities nicely. sketching out basic layout on a scrap of paper, we photographed it and sent it to the incredible john delucca. 3 days later he sent back a final drawing and we began to colour it. the resulting image is a visual allegory commenting on whether it's really the relationship that's killing you, or whether it's actually something else.
_link
activatornyc.com
_tags
wide
detail
_what
record sleeve for the sheffield-based band, 65daysofstatic.
_how
wild light is 65daysofstatic's sixth LP. presented with manifestos, poems, drawings, prints and transcripts of studio discussions about the concept of 'wild light', we set about producing a piece of work that we felt best encapsulated these ideas whilst also touching on how it felt to listen to the music itself. the result is something we're very proud of, and we hope is something that will change in meaning when you hear the music itself.
_link
65daysofstatic.com
_tags
cover
tenacious d show poster
_what
record sleeve for the nashville-based band, the protomen
_how
here's another one of the many fruits of our on-going collaborations with the protomen. the band played a tribute night in nashville, TN, back in late 2010 and the recordings came out so well they decided to release it. performing as 'queen' for the night, we decided to recreate the iconic 'queen II' record cover in a studio in brooklyn. the photography is by long-time (v) collaborator matt sundin, and the logo work is by M L hope. we handled the art direction, post-production + layout duties. 
_link
protomen.com
_tags
BBDLP1 cover
detail
poster
_what
artwork for big black delta's debut LP, BBDLP1
_how
continuing the very fluid back and forth between us and jonathan bates, this the cover for the forthcoming BBDLP1 is our attempt at capturing the immensity that is this new record. whether you are listening to the lush love song that is 'capsize' or the vastness, heaving space trip that is 'BBD3', we wanted the cover to echo both the inner workings of jon's mind as well as the beautiful, dark recesses of the universe. no longer the man with his head exploding on the cover of mellowdrone's 'angry bear', we now step deeper inside that thinking and in doing so reach much further out into space as we get involved with his obsession with UFO folk-lore and his desire to be taken away from his planet by whatever means possible.
_link
bigblackdelta.com
_tags
album cover
stitches single cover
awaltzoflight cover
poster
_what
artwork for polinski's debut album, labyrinths
_how
paul wolinski is one quarter of the experimental musical machine that is 65daysofstatic. polinski is his more purely electronic side-project.

the discussions for how to handle the artwork for the album started years before the record was even a twinkle in his eye. we'd talked at length for years about films, musics, books, games and designs that appeal to us for whatever reason. whether it be the books of jeff noon or the cassette loading games of sinclair zx spectrum, there was an innate understanding of what this solo project would demand in terms of artwork the moment the demos started to come together.

the final artwork started with us coming up with a story that would capture paul's feelings about various things and how he wanted to translated those into a science fiction tale of some kind. the next step was padding that story out with various touchstone visual elements and then translating those into a series of panels that we could use for the album and any singles. the first image we put together turned out to be the album cover as it is now, and this went onto influence paul's approach to making the music. he then sent us more demos that inspired the creation of more panels, and so the back and forth went until we had enough to illustrate the story / world we had created.

the music video for the album's first single, stitches, was an attempt to bring back the feeling of using the zx spectrum computer, whilst detailing some of the album's narrative elements. more details on the making of the video to follow soon.
_link
polinskimusic.net
_tags
print
album cover
_what
music video + print design for LA-based band, sonoio
_how
we'd been aware for a while that sonoio (alessandro cortini) intended to follow up his unique and well received experimental synth debut, with a 'sequel' record of some kind. then a few months ago we were given the rough mixes of this new record and started to put together ideas for how to top the artwork for the first record and yet make it feel like an organic and fluid transition conceptually. alessandro had already made it clear to us that this record would be based around the colour red, so we simply had to evolve things and further the story of the matisse-esque characters we'd developed for the original blue album cover.

furthermore alessandro was toying with the idea of a music video this time and asked that we might pitch a few ideas to him for a couple of different songs on the record. we came up with 3-4 ideas he chose the most 'live performance' based concept that we had and soon things were under way. the video was for the song enough, which to us was one of the songs that immediately jumped out on the record when hearing it for the first time. once more we recruited the talents of matt sundin (who helped us shoot the 65daysofstatic and war widow album covers) and soon after alessandro was flying to new york to shoot the video with us in brooklyn.

you can read more about making the artwork + video here.
_link
sonoio.org
_tags
print
album cover
_what
LP artwork for the LA-based band, sonoio
_how
alessandro cortini, widely know for his multi-instrumental work for nine inch nails, got in touch with us recently. a fan of our record sleeve and poster work for mellowdrone, he wanted us to create artwork to accompany his new solo project, SONOIO.

now we say 'artwork' as opposed to 'design work' because he was particularly interested in the looser, more painterly / emotional elements of our work over some kind of cleaner, tighter design effort. modwheelmood (his previous band) had been heavy on the minimal design / die-cutting and this time, the record being much more personal to him, alessandro wanted a more cathartic, hand-made quality.

we talked for a while and decided that we should try to create something that had a european quality to it - something that harked back to alessandro's roots. combining this with a visual device that we felt was most honest to the lyrical content on the record, we came up with the two matisse-esque characters you see on the cover, who are trying to cover up the holes in their chests. the colour choices were then informed in part by the colour of the buchla synth itself. the pencil marks are that of my father thomas newbolt, who's drawings we cut up and relocated elements of for the sake of adding more movement / life to the collage.
_link
sonoio.org
_tags
album cover
inside sleeve
back cover
cd
ep cover
_what
artwork for the pony collaboration's second album 'if these are the good times' and the supporting e.p 'i never knew'
_how
james, the head of the pony collaboration, came to us with a few photographs he had sourced as a starting point for the art direction on their second album. visually, the route we took was to show the new album as reflection of their first. this is especially apparent with the cd itself which reflects a more sombre outlook than the jolly pink one from their first release. both james and version wanted to take the visual cues from the first album and reflect it as if seen in a forgotten dirtied mirror, very much like the source photography he gave us.

their new album is out now on series 8 records. the new digital single will be out in may 2010.
_link
theponycollaboration.com
_tags
front cover
back cover
_what
artwork for makeup and vanity set's self-titled album
_how
through our long-standing collaborations with the protomen we were contacted by their touring DJ makeup and vanity set. he wanted us to create a furious sleeve design for his forthcoming even more furious self-titled release. after 4 or 5 design ideas were tried, we found solace in the one you see here. if you dig it, know that the album is even better.
_link
makeupandvanityset.com
_tags
film poster
album cover
_what
artwork for the protomen's second album, act 2 - the father of death
_how
everything about this record cover + poster had to be bigger and better. the moment we heard act 2 we knew the protomen had taken things far beyond anyone's imagining, and that we were under a huge amount of pressure now to produce artwork that echoed that through & through. we were aware of john delucca's work after collaborating with him on a previous poster for the band, and hired him once again to produce the fantastic 'streets of fire' inspired drawing you see above. we then took care of the sleeve + poster layouts and also put together the 24 page booklet that would detail the story behind the music on the album.
_link
protomen.com
_tags
wide
cover
back cover
poster
_what
artwork for mellowdrone's second LP, angry bear
_how
mellowdrone called us one evening in march wondering if we were at all interested in working with them on the artwork for the follow-up record to 'box', an album which we'd played into the ground obsessively for who knows how long. work began immediately with discussions about what the new record was saying and where the band were at now. turns out they were the same age as us and into all the same stuff (david lynch, fist of the north star etc.). we then toiled for a while on an idea and passed it over to them. it was the right direction. we then produced 2 more pieces in a similar vein that formed a narrative around the core concept and produced templates for both cd + vinyl. the vinyl doesn't contain the third and final panel of the artwork, but it does have a blue plastic disc and a nice design idea for navigating which side is which.
_tags
album cover
inside sleeve
back cover
_what
artwork for the pony collaboration's self-titled debut album
_how
we here at version have been following the pony collaboration since they formed back in 2003 and have been strong supporters of their unique brand of wonky alternative country music. james scallan, the lead singer of the band whom is a friend of version from years past got together with us to collaborate (as pony so often like to do) on a creative venture to encapsulate all that went into those recordings but in graphical form. i think that between us and the pony collaboration we have created a perfect package for those wonky alternative country tracks. enjoy.

their debut album is out in april 2007 on series 8 records.
_link
theponycollaboration.com
_tags
kraken single cover
_what
record sleeve for the london-based rock band, officer kicks.
_how
straight out of the murderland here is our tough little cover for the first single off officer kick's forthcoming album, citywide curfew. the band's singer jamie gordon had a vision of this skeletal copper terrorizing the town depicted within the lyrics of this their latest 'concept' album.
_link
officerkicks.com
_tags
album cover
inside sleeve
tray inlay
back cover
_what
artwork for actionfist's album 'fisticuffs'
_how
the electronic musician, actionfist, approached version industries with the need for some glitch based artwork to accompany his eclectic genre skipping style of music.

the album fisticuffs is due later this year on lab beat records.
_link
labbeat.com
_tags