This week we made a new sign for the soundtracks section. We’re really proud of our selection, but we’re especially proud of this sweet new sign!
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The idea is certainly much older, having appeared in an altarpiece in the apse of the Old St. Peter’s Basilica in the 14th century. Italian painter Giotto included in his Stefaneschi Tryptic the eponymous Cardinal holding a smaller image of the work. The work was preserved through the destruction of the Old Basilica and remains in a Vatican art museum.
The technique is best known to record collectors for its appearance on Best of Friends, the groundbreaking psychedelic rock album by the Smurfs released on the progressive Starland Music label in 1982.
Its awesome cover only hints and the mind-expanding masterpiece contained within illusive copies of Best of Friends, which of course was named the #1 most important album of all time by Rolling Stone upon its initial release.
The technique also appeared on a far more conventional album by Pink Floyd ten years earlier. The first copies of this album included a copy of the soundtrack to Gigi, which had to be withdrawn for copyright complaints, leaving only a blank album jacket in subsequent pressings like the one seen here. The best thing about the Ummagumma‘s jacket is that they have fun with the Droste effect by changing the position of the Pink Floyders in each reproduction of the image, suggesting an infinite cycle, or perhaps endless overlapping realities.
Our in-house design team (ie our friend Paul) used the Droste effect on the jacket for Live at Hymie’s, an LP+DVD we released this past Record Store Day. He placed the album in one of the shelves in the shop, originally because we asked him to cover up a Mylon LeFevre album because, well ugh, Mylon.
We’re pretty proud of this compilation, but it’s no Best of Friends.
If you’re not sure how to deface your records you can’t go wrong with a beard and moustache. Desperate? For dramatic effect we recommend a pair of devil horns.
He was Rick Springfield’s bull terrier/great Dane mix. His name was Lethal Ron, which Springfield explains in his memoir Late, Late at Night was a name the adopted stray earned because of his “staggeringly bad gas.”
In a recent interview Springfield explains that two days after Ronnie died, he found a baby hawk in his fireplace and believed it was Ronnie’s spirit, so he got a hawk tattoo.
Believe it or not, RCA didn’t want the picture of Ronnie on the cover, and Springfield had to fight for the image which is not considered a classic cover from the 80s.