best album cover art of 2008


Artist: The Accidental
Album: There Were Wolves
Record Label: Full Time Hobby
Designer: Rob Lowe, Supermundane
Listen: Wolves


Artist: Bon Iver
Album: For Emma, Forever Ago
Record Label: 4ad
Designer: Photography by Gilbert Vernon
and Design by Daniel Murphy
Listen: Creature Fear

Artist: Fleet Foxes
Album: Fleet Foxes
Record Label: Bella Union
Designer: Original Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder
Listen: Mykonos

Artist: The Gutter Twins
Album: Saturnalia
Record Label: Sub Pop Records 
Designer: Photography by Frank Relle
and Art Direction by Scott Ford
Listen: Each to Each

Artist: The Notwist
Album: The Devil, You + Me
Record Label: City Slang
Designer: Yokoland
Listen: Where in This World

Artist: Black Mountain
Album: In The Future
Record Label: Jagjaguwar
Designer: J. Schmidt
Listen: Angels


Artist: Coldplay
Album: Viva la Vida
Record Label: Parlaphone
Designer: Art Direction & Design by Tappin Gofton,
Original Painting by Eugene Delacroix
Listen: Lost!

Artist: Foals
Album: Antidotes
Record Label: Sub Pop Records
Designer: Tinhead
Listen: Olympic Airways 

Album: Santogold
Record Label: Downtown
Designer: Isabelle Lumpkin
Listen: Creator 

Artist: Bloc Party
Album: Intimacy
Record Label: Witchita
Designer: Photography by Perry Curties
and Art Direction by Rob Crane
Listen: Biko 

Artist: Micah P Hinson
Album: And the Red Empire Orchestra
Record Label: Full Time Hobby
Designer: Micah P Hinson
Listen: I Keep Havin’ These Dreams 

Artist: Neon Neon
Album: Stainless Style
Record Label: Lex Records
Designer: EhQuestionMark
Listen: I Lust You 

the slip

Nine Inch Nails
Album: The Slip
Record Label: The Null Corporation
Designer: Rob Sheridan
Listen: The Four of Us are Dying 


The Twilight Sad
Album: Killed My Parents and Hit the Road
Record Label: FatCat Records
Designer: The Twilight Sad
Listen: Half a Person (The Smiths)


Minotaur Shock
Album: Amateur Dramatics
Record Label: 4ad
Designer: Warwick The Skipper
Listen: This Plane is Going to Fall

20 Responses

  1. deborah knights

    having server problems at the moment
    so I am not going to send you web page
    but I have an album cover that I wanted to show you late 08 release
    who May I email for this site to possibly post it to ?


  2. musicisart

    thank you so much rachel, happy new year! the tracks chosen are definitely my favorites from each special album cover, but with bon iver, that is truly in my top ten list of favorite albums of 2008, period 🙂

  3. rachel

    Love this post my dear! Great selections. So I assume this is your favorite cover art along with choice track?

  4. Ample Sanity

    […] of Beth Robinson’s Chimney Sweeps and other bird people. One hell of a great mp3 line-up at Music is Art. Vinh often makes me smile: Claw Marks in the Frozen Peas. Also smile-worthy: The Far Side […]

  5. the year in music «

    […] Music is art has a post on the best album cover art of 2008.There is some astounding art on album covers these days, varying from this Renaissance-looking cover of the Fleet Foxes to the more modern sensibilities of Black Mountain. It was a pretty good year in music too, especially if you’re not constrained to FM pop (although I’m only slightly ashamed to admit that I think Britney’s “Womanizer” isn’t a bad single). Here are some of my favorite albums of the year. […]

  6. Andrew

    Good post, but I think the Coldplay one is too obvious and trite. It would be like putting the Mona Lisa on an album cover.

  7. Jeff

    Nice selections. I especially love that Gutter Twins cover. The NoLa photo reminds me of “Down by Law”

  8. musicisart

    thank you so much eardrums, best wishes to you for 2009!

    at first, i felt the exact same way about the cover for NIN but as i listened to the album, the art started to blend (slip) into the sounds and felt almost fitting for the dark transparency of the music.

  9. Knut | Eardrums

    Great post! I agree on most of these, especially the beautiful cover of The Accidental, and also The NoTwist. The Accidental cover is both a visual and a tactile delight! I strongly disagree on the cover for Nine Ince Nails, which I think looks awful, – nothing less than that…
    I would also like to note that your blog still is among the most beautiful ones out there!
    Best wishes for 2009!

  10. musicisart

    thanks Skip! good observation 🙂

    “The cover art is a doctored version of Sonic Youth’s classic ‘Goo’ album; the recognizable masks which link this to past Twilight Sad releases now cover the couple’s faces.”

  11. Skip

    Great post. I feel obligated to say – although it might be obvious – that The Twilight Sad basically re-used/copied the cover of Sonic Youth’s “Goo” (1990).